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When living in a box = cool + good

If you've lived here for more than a few years, you probably think that our stucco-and-frame house obsession is somehow welded into our very development DNA, stitched into our very collective psyche -- or at least, maybe, defensibly sensible from a cost-effectiveness point of view. Update: Not true! Check out this eco-awesome compound built from a shipping container -- just up the street, sorta!

To deflect some of the Mojave Desert sun, a steel Unistrut structure is bolted to the house to secure a skin of modular, perforated, metal panels. These panels blanket the south, west, and breezeway portions and they’re transparent. Which is to say, the skin balances views, natural ventilation, and a 50% reduction in heat and glare.

Yes please!

As a longtime journalist in Southern Nevada, native Las Vegan Andrew Kiraly has served as a reporter covering topics as diverse as health, sports, politics, the gaming industry and conservation. He joined Desert Companion in 2010, where he has helped steward the magazine to become a vibrant monthly publication that has won numerous honors for its journalism, photography and design, including several Maggie Awards.