Shop, Eat and Dine at These Repurposed Shipping Containers

Three attractions to visit in London, Calgary and Long Beach.

Photo courtesy of Boxpark

Cities are creatively repurposing old shipping containers to construct outdoor hubs for shopping, dining and arts events. Here are three boxy attractions worth visiting.

Boxpark, London, England

Located in the city’s Shoreditch neighbourhood, the world’s first pop-up mall opened in 2011. Its more than 40 shops and eateries are housed in black shipping containers stacked atop one another in two levels (the top level is accessed by stairs). Shop for British and Scandinavian jewelry by Pärla and rock star tea towels at The Gift Box, and enjoy a meal at CookDaily.

containR, Calgary, Alta.

Honeybees, a dancing woman and outstretched hands are the subjects of the large-scale paintings covering six shipping containers in this public art park. In the Hillhurst-Sunnyside neighbourhood, containR park’s square courtyard is the site of live music and dance performances, cultural festivals and local market events from May to October.

SteelCraft, Long Beach, Calif.

This recently opened outdoor dining space or “food lot” features eight food and drink vendors set up in grey and red shipping containers arranged around a grassy, communal dining space. Sit at its reclaimed wood tables under strings of lights and eat spicy sesame ramen from Tajima or a berries and acai shave ice from The Fresh Shave.