Recently, a couple moved into a 3D-printed concrete home in the Netherlands—but it’s not much to look at. The square gray building with rounded corners is the first of a series meant to ease the country’s housing shortage. It’s just the latest in the list of the most famous 3D-printed homes, with countless more to come.
As researchers make advances in 3D-printing technology, they’re opening up a world of potential applications that is truly staggering. Automobiles, human hearts, homes on Mars. But people are already 3D-printing homes all over the globe. New methods are changing the construction industry as visionary builders get the ball rolling. We can build these homes cheaper, faster, and with nearly zero waste. Plus, all we need is an enormous 3D printer swinging around on a crane.
2017: Moscow, Russia
American 3D-printing company Apis Cor partnered with a Russian real estate developer to construct a home near Moscow. The story went viral. It cost just $10,000, including furnishings, windows, and doors. They built it in 24 hours, while it was snowing. The tiny home was completely round and painted bright yellow.
2018: Nantes, France
The first time a family actually moved into a 3D-printed home, it was in Nantes, France. Because it cost more than $200,000 to built, skeptics noted that Apis Cor may have underestimated their $10,000 claim. The 3D-printed parts of this home took 54 hours to build, but windows, doors, and other parts took another four months to get fitted. This time, the design was a bit more exciting. Because it’s easier to construct more complicated architecture with additive manufacturing, this four-bedroom house curved around the environmentally protected trees on the lot.
2022: Rancho Mirage, California
An entire neighborhood of 3D-printed homes is planned for the valley where the Coachella music festival takes place. Because of its location, these might end up being the most famous 3D-printed homes in the world if they attract the same sustainably-minded celebrities who bought Priuses. Each of the 15 homes costs about $600,000, which includes three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a swimming pool.