For several years now, small houses built in a few days, such as tiny houses or container houses, have become a must in the real estate market. Today, future owners no longer wish to go into debt over decades, and those who already are no longer considering a traditional second home. Materials such as the wood of tiny houses or the metal of containers are therefore preferred. But wouldn’t the future of houses that are quickly built and sometimes even much less expensive than tiny houses lie in another material or rather in another technique that is 3D printing? And it could also be a solution for housing the homeless… 3D printing, the future of construction, why not?
A global housing crisis
It is becoming obvious, prices are soaring, demand is greater than supply… Some cities have become “tourist cities” which only offer much more lucrative vacation rentals, and during this time, those who are looking for accommodation do not find any! Let’s not talk about those with too modest incomes or the homeless for whom housing becomes a real obstacle course. The company ICON Build offers small houses printed in 3D, in just a few hours, for less than 4000€! By combining design creativity and technological innovation, ICON intends to change the game around the world… Their robotic technology, unique in the world, makes it possible to build houses entirely printed in 3D in just a few hours.
A village project for America’s homeless
They are currently working on the Community First Village which will be built (or printed) in Austin, Texas. ICON’s goal was to be able to accommodate 40% of the homeless of the city of Austin in this kind of durable and quick to build housing. The first building in this village will be the reception center with an area of 46 m² which has been built in just 27 hours ! With professionally designed layouts and amenities similar to traditional homes, ICON’s goal is not just to offer homes that are built quickly, but more importantly, homes that are well-built, durable and fitted out like traditional homes.
Texas for beginners, but not only
Creating this homeless village in Texas is just the first step in ICON’s ambition. With this project, they wish to prove that they are able to provide a real sustainable solution to housing problems that affect every country in the world. In Mexico, they are also working with a non-profit association, New Story, to build a village of 50 houses of the same style in the city of Tabasco.
Some technical characteristics of a 3D printed house
Each house weighs around 900 kilos, for dimensions of 2.45 meters high with foundations 8.50 meters wide. The printer can work at a speed of about 20 centimeters per second. The constructions are guaranteed without any waste, are resistant to bad weather and only require 4 to 6 people for the entire construction. Currently, a 3D printed house costs around €10,000, but ICON explains that it can reduce the cost to less than €4,000, and could very well be the future of affordable housing in countries around the world! More info: iconbuild.com