6 Unusual Uses For Dumpsters

When you think about dumpster rental, you probably envision a large, rolling unit behind your favorite store or near an apartment complex. If you like home renovation shows on television, you might picture the larger, roll-off versions that are delivered to the work site via semi truck and picked up at a later, predetermined time once they are full of construction debris. There are other uses for dumpsters, however weird they may be. 

1. Pool: Yes, a dumpster was transformed into a pool. Actually, to be fair, many dumpsters have been turned into pools. A company in New York realized that a dumpster is the perfect vessel for such a project, and positioned one throughout New York City one hot and humid summer. To their surprise, the little project grew by leaps and bounds. In fact, NYC mayor Bloomberg commissioned several pools to be placed around the city the following year. A quick Google search will net you what you need to get started building a dumpster pool of your own.

2. Home: The tiny-home revolution has started, and dumpsters are now fair game for alternative living quarters. A professor of Environmental Science decided to put his money where his mouth is and moved into a 33 square foot dumpster. Initially meant to be a very short-term experiment, the idea grew into a year-long project that is detailed on his blog. The dumpster was originally lived in as-is,without any frills, but over time small luxury items were added, including a table, a chair, and somewhere to hang his limited clothes. 

3. Urban Gardening: As the concept of urban gardening continues to grow, cities will run out of community plots, abandoned lots, and alleys for all those tomatoes and green peppers. Enter the dumpster garden. Simply fill with dirt, plant, water and wait to harvest. This one even has a built-in bench for the general public to enjoy. Who knew you could mix homegrown veggies with a dumpster and get something so awesome?!

4. Skate Park: Skate boarding is growing in popularity and many municipalities are heeding the call for more skate parks. If you live in a city with a skating community and a public skate park to enjoy, great. If not, consider building your own. A skateboard enthusiast did just that but, rather than taking up precious backyard space, the builder used a portable dumpster. It's pretty ingenious; if your friends can't get to you, simply bring the skate park to them. Unlike the folks in the photo, wear a helmet.

5. Art Gallery: Art is in the eye of the beholder sure has a double-entendre with this one. An everyday, run-of-the-mill dumpster was transformed into a traveling art gallery. While this Brooklyn artist and self-confessed pack rat displays ordinary objects in a seemingly random, yet pleasing exhibit, the concept of the traveling gallery could work with many applications, including a juried art show or a modern art exhibit. 

6. Camping: Who says you have to pack up all your gear and head to the woods? With a refurbished dumpster like this one, you can simply pitch a tent wherever you are. S'mores anyone? While there is no accompanying blog post or instructions with this photo, the setup looks fairly simple. The dumpster is filled with dirt, perhaps with an underlayment of Styrofoam to reduce the weight, and then over-planted with grass. 

Who knew so many unique and sustainable ideas would come from the lowly dumpster? It certainly gives you new perspective on such an everyday item and the creative lengths some people are willing to go to to be green.