The world is experiencing a housing crisis. According to Yale University, there are 150 million homeless people worldwide. And, sadly, of those with a home, an estimated 1.6 billion are living in conditions that aren’t adequate or safe.
This past March, two companies revealed an innovative plan to help solve world homelessness.
Icon is an Austin-based company “focused on creating sustainable building practices to make quality homes accessible for all,” Business Insider reported. Icon recently teamed up with New Story, a non-profit organization dedicated to building low-cost homes around the world, and came up with an innovative solution to the world’s housing crisis— which they unveiled at this year’s South by Southwest (SXSW) Conference in Austin.
Icon and New Story unveiled the first fully-permitted 3D printed home— and the best part? It’s way cheaper than a regular house and can be “built” in just 24 hours.
Currently, the proof-of-concept price is about $10,000, but they hope to bring the total costs down to just $4,000.
The home is printed by a giant 3D printer called the Vulcan, which the two companies developed together. Instead of ink, the Vulcan uses mortar and prints the walls of the home layer by layer. According to Business Insider, the walls roof and floor can be made in as little as 12 hours. After that, a worker comes in to complete the windows, doors, plumbing, and electrical.
The 650-square foot home is cheerful and open, featuring lots of windows and a covered patio that wraps around two outside walls.
Inside, it has a living room…
… a small office…
…. a bedroom…
The companies plan on building 100 of these houses in El Salvador within the next year. Eventually, they may also start selling them in the United States.
Although a 3D printed home may seem bizarre to some people, the idea makes sense in terms of practicality. Building homes with 3D printers allow for more personalization than traditional methods. Additionally, the companies note, the process produces much less waste.
Since 3D printing became popular a few years ago, people have been touting its ability to revolutionize the home building industry.
Back in 2015, the Chinese company Winsun went viral for creating a 3D printed mansion and tower.
The structures were only a proof-of-concept, but they succeeded in showing the potentials of 3D-printing technology. You can take a little tour in the video below:
A few weeks ago, Eindhoven, a city in the Netherlands, also revealed plans to start building 3D houses. The first five homes will be put on the market next year.
“In the Netherlands, we have a shortage of bricklayers and people who outside, and so it [3D printing] offers a solution to that,” Rudy Van Gurp, a manager from the Van Wijen construction company, explained. Eindhoven chose curved, futuristic architecture for their 3D printed homes. “We like the look fo the houses at the moment, as this is an innovation and it is a very futuristic design,” Van Gurp said.
“But we are already looking to take a step further, and people will be able to design their own homes and then print them out.”
I think 3D-printed homes are a great way to put a dent in the housing crisis! At only a fraction of the cost of a traditional house, in addition to producing much less waste, it looks like 3D-printed houses may be here to stay!
Check out the video below.
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Source: HouseBeautiful via Tout