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House utilizing shipping containers for lateral system

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I got a request for proposal for a two story house structural design 
utilizing stacked shipping containers comprizing the lateral resisting 
system as well as a partial gravity supports. This is my first experience 
even though I know that it has been routinely used across the country in 
the last 10 years.

I am looking for examples of how to approach this as the containers have 
multiple openings both longitudinally (as long as 12ft) and cutting off the 
 end walls.  I imagine that the structural framing members vary depending 
on the manufacturer.  In wonder what should I reasonably ask the architect 
as to the information pertaining to containers (8' x 8' x 40'long). Member 
size,  material properties,  wall sheet materials,  etc?  What am i 

How should I go about the analysis?  I guess even with openings tesenboxes 
are pretty rigid but how do I detemine their stiffness to show that plywood 
 diaphragms are flexible (or not)?  Seems like a normal FEM analysis is in 
order.  Any thoughts or suggestions would be appreciated.

The project is in CA.


Alexander Sasha Itsekson,  SE
Oakland,  CA

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