Could container homes work in Charlotte?

Could container homes work in Charlotte?

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - One community activist is trying to get containers to help with the affordable housing crisis in Charlotte.

Robert Dawkins is a member of Charlotte Housing Justice Coalition. He recently went to London to cheer on the Carolina Panthers. During his trip he wanted to see how London embraces containers for entertainment purposes and for homes.

“I think London is a more progressive city.” Dawkins said.

Dawkins saw multiple containers used in a particular London district. He was amazed. He also knows there is another place in London where container homes are making a difference for people in need of a roof over top of their heads.

“They’ve put together container homes that have made a whole district,” Dawkins said. “I can say about 30 container homes stacked together.”

Dawkins now wants to get Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles on board with this concept. He is now talking with experts and gathering more information to present to the Mayor. He knows the Mayor is particular new thoughts.

“Mayor Lyles will entertain any idea,” Dawkins said. “If it is put together and thoroughly thought out.”

Lyles admits this affordable housing crisis means all options are on the table. The Mayor anticipates there will be challenges making container homes a reality.

“I’ve heard of neighborhoods talk about containers and tiny homes,” Lyles said. “And how do we do that with zoning and how do we make sure that the kind of amenities around to make the houses successful. those are all things we need to explore.”

Cities like Miami and Nashville have already decided that container homes are the way to go to address its shortage of affordable housing. Dawkins hopes Lyles will buy into the container homes concept and start creating partnerships that can help people in Charlotte who struggle to buy a home.

“How about using that to leverage CSX,” Dawkins said. “Norfolk Southern - all the container companies as that being something they can contribute to help our housing crisis.”

The cost of a container home can range from $150,000 on up.

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