Not only is Starbucks my favorite place to get coffee (Caramel Macchiatos to be exact), but this is also my favorite architectural design I’ve seen this year so far. What you see in these pictures is a Starbucks drive-thru created from four huge shipping containers. The containers are recycled and repurposed into an actual Starbucks location. They were formally boxes used to ship Starbucks tea and coffee all over the world.
This is not a concept design; it’s a real Starbucks in Tukwila, Washington. There is room inside for three employees, and the entire space is about 448 square feet. Starbucks, like many companies, has been on a mission lately to go greener in an effort to increase sustainability while also lowering energy use and costs. I think this “shipping box design” is much more attractive than a regular boring coffee shop. Not only is it better for the environment, it reeks of creativity and uniqueness. It looks quaint and cozy.
Right now, this is the only Starbucks in the world with this design; however, it could be recreated in many other places. Only time will tell if Starbucks will continue to make more of these types of locations. As an aside, those are some big ‘ol shipping containers. I don’t think I’ve ever seen any that big before. Very nice!