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Outdoor Use of freight containers

Messages
4
Points
0
I would like to request zoning/design guidelines for the storage of freight containers. Freight containers are typically delivered on 18 wheeler trucks to industrial uses as well as retail such as Wal Mart. These containers are removed from the trucks so that the contents can be removed (or for storage) and the truck can be sent on its way. The problem we are having is the accumulation of the containers behind and around some of our retail establishments. This creates aesthetic problems since they can be viewed from the right of way as well as potential safety problems as they could potentially obstruct passage of emergency vehicles. Any guidelines to address this problem would be greatly appreciated. Also, a good definition of freight container would be appreciated.
 

Jeff

Cyburbian
Messages
4,161
Points
27
Don't you already have outdoor storage regs in place?

Anyway, if they are against the building get the fire marshal involved, they are int he way if the FD has to ladder the building.
 

ludes98

Cyburbian
Messages
1,264
Points
22
Several cities here in Arizona address this as "temporary storage." Generally the containers have to be screened by a solid fence (read block) with solid gates (read steel.) The open storage of them is generally prohibited, especially when they occupy parking and truck drives. Even when users designate and design an area for them, they cannot use parking areas or restrict any pedestrian access or emergency vehicles.

I have permitted these areas for several clients. The key (as far as actually getting it approved) is design. Fully screened, integrated appearance, and good access for trucks and the user who may need to get in to it often. I know retailers use them for their seasonal sales stuff like Christmas ornaments and lights up the ying-yang. They also use them for layaway storage around Christmas.
 

Dan

Dear Leader
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
18,116
Points
63
Welcome aboard, Piedmont Planner!

I haven't experienced the problem that you describe. In codes that I've written and used, though, I would consider such containers used for storage as outdoor storage, which is usually covered under specific regulations.

If site plans are binding, you may want to consult the original plan to see if the area where the containers are being stored is designated specifically for outdoor storage.
 

solarstar

Cyburbian
Messages
207
Points
9
Those were a constant problem where I used to work in Florida. They were showing up in private yards, as well as various retail sites. We finally completely outlawed them as "storage", defining them as "vehicles, or trailers (semi-and/or utility)". They could be loaded and unloaded at approved, screened sites at some of the big boxes, but otherwise weren't allowed. Hope that helps!
 
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