Shipping containers are readily available in 20’ or 40’ lengths with the standard height being 8’-6” tall. In the case of the 40’ containers, you have an additional choice which is known as a “high cube” or 9’-6” tall.
The initial decision begins prior to picking out the container itself. Your first step In the process is to contact your local municipality and find out what the zoning of the particular area will allow. The three possible answers you will get might be:
1) No restrictions
2) Allowable with issuance of a permit
3) Not permitted
In most commercially zoned areas, having a container on the premises is no problem. If you are renting commercial space in a strip mall, you will want to contact the property manager for approval.
So now you’ve been given the okay to proceed. What size do you need? That is going to depend on the amount of room you have onsite and also on the requirements of the truck used to make the delivery. This means the amount of straight pull away distance (measured in feet) the driver needs to drop the container and pull completely out from under it. The minimum requirements are 80 feet for a 20’ truck and 130 feet for a 40’ truck. Additionally, any access gates should be no less than 10’ wide and preferably 12’ wide.
Once the space requirements are established, the size of the container you choose is going to be governed by the amount of items you are intending to store. Always plan for future storage space. Remember… the longer we live, the more “stuff” we tend to accumulate so you may only need a 20’ unit now but a 40’ unit allows for “things to come”.
Lastly, the 40’ high cube container is ideal for applications where you intend on stacking items ( boxes in particular). Though an additional foot in height doesn’t seem like much, it can prove to be very useful. Here at A Aamerican Container, our highly trained sales staff can greatly assist you in making the best choice for your individual needs.