Q’anápsu Dispensary

Location: Ridgefield, WA
Size: 5,000 sq ft

Project Description

Q’anápsu (KIN-ÄP-SU) is a marijuana dispensary built on the Cowlitz Indian Reservation in Ridgefield, Washington out of twenty-five upcycled one-trip shipping containers of various sizes. The two-story project consists of a check-in entrance/patio, 5,000 square foot retail space, ATM room, photo/selfie room, product storage space, employee back-of-house lounge, offices, and mechanical spaces.

This design-build project was taken from concept to construction completion in just one year, with a construction duration of only six months. It is one of the largest shipping container structures in the Western Hemisphere. High volume spaces and impressive cantilevers create an attractive space for the Cowlitz Tribe to feature their culture, language, and history while generating revenue essential to support their people and programs.

High site seismicity, 20-foot cantilevers, and removal of large portions of the second-story container floors and sidewalls to create a 2-story, expansive retail volume presented complex structural challenges requiring creative solutions. As the structural engineer of record for the building, individual container modifications, and foundation, JVA worked directly with the project architect, container designer, and fabricator to provide a constructable, structurally sound design under a tight design and construction schedule.

Q’anápsu demonstrates that re-used shipping containers can be successfully incorporated into commercial structures in regions of high seismicity and can sustainably support eye-catching architecture. Now in service, the building brings important visibility and revenue to the Cowlitz Tribe.

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