If you've ever gotten choked up listening to public radio, chances are you were listening to a StoryCorps segment. StoryCorps records testimonies of everyday Americans, often in booths and makeshift studios. The oral histories are broadcast weekly on NPR’s Morning Edition.
This weekend, a recording booth is in San Francisco's Bayview Hunters Point neighborhood. But the booth is not a typical StoryCorps structure.
“It’s a modified shipping container,” said Douglas Burnham, founder and principal of Envelope, a San Francisco architecture firm that designed the space. “It’s what’s called a sidewinder container, and that’s a special container that has doors where one whole side can open up.”
The inside of the industrial gray container has been outfitted to look like a living room, complete with wallpaper, two armchairs, and a rug. A big picture window cut out of one wall offers a view of the bay.
“It’s really a place to try to bring a home-like atmosphere, so people feel comfortable telling their stories,” Burnham said.