Habitat for Humanity is creating a 3D printed home for a family of 3 in Virginia – see inside

A rendering of the interior of the home's dining room and kitchen
A rendering of the 3D printed home’s interior

  • Habitat for Humanity has partnered with Alquist, a 3D-printing home construction company.
  • Together, the nonprofit and Alquist will construct a 3D-printed home in Williamsburg, Virginia.
  • The home will later be sold to a family of three.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Habitat for Humanity has partnered with Alquist, a 3D-printing home construction company, to create a 3D-printed home in Williamsburg, Virginia in an attempt to address the US housing crisis.

This isn’t Habitat for Humanity’s first 3D-printing rodeo. In mid-June, the nonprofit announced it would be using Germany-based Peri’s COBOD “build on-demand printer” – or the BOD2 – to 3D print a home in Tempe, Arizona.

“When we consider the housing issues facing Arizona, the need for affordable homeownership solutions becomes clear,” Jason Barlow, president and CEO of Habitat Central Arizona, said in the press release at the time. “If we can deliver decent, affordable, more energy-efficient homes at less cost, in less time and with less waste, we think that could be a real game-changer.”

Now, Habitat for Humanity Peninsula and Greater Williamsburg is bringing this 3D printing mission to the East Coast with the help of Alquist, which will begin constructing and printing the home’s walls later this month. Similar to Peri, Alquist is partners with COBOD, according to Alquist’s website.

a rendering of the COBOD 3D printer
The printer.

Like the Tempe, Arizona home, the goal of this upcoming Williamsburg, Virginia home is to address the housing crisis, specifically skyrocketing home prices and slow construction times.

Now, let’s take a peek around the upcoming 3D printed home

A rendering of the exterior of the brown and white home with trees and bushes around it
A rendering of the 3D printed home’s exterior.

Like other 3D printing home companies, Alquist’s printing system uses concrete, creating a time and money-saving method of construction, according to the press release. The concrete also insulates the home while making it tornado and hurricane resistant.

When it’s complete, the 3D-printed home will stand at 1,200 square feet with its three bedrooms and two bathrooms. It’ll also be EarthCraft certified, which means the unit will be both green and energy efficient.

A rendering of the interior of the home's dining and living room, kitchen
A rendering of the 3D printed home’s interior

Like other Habitat for Humanity homes, the project will be built by volunteers, sponsors, and people who want to purchase the final unit.

In this case, a person named April and her family of three will purchase this 3D-printed home. From there, her zero-interest mortgage, taxes, and insurance will be about 30% of her income, which is already 80% lower than her community’s median income level, according to the press release.

“We’ve seen firsthand how Habitat for Humanity’s housing program provides an enhanced quality of life for families,” Janet Green, Habitat for Humanity Peninsula and Greater Williamsburg’s CEO, said in the press release. “We are so excited to be constructing a 3D home for this family and help them achieve their dream of homeownership.”

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Habitat for Humanity is building a 3D-printed home in Arizona to help solve the affordable housing crisis. See how it’s being constructed.

The home being 3D printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

  • Habitat for Humanity in Central Arizona is building a 3D-printed home in Tempe, Arizona.
  • The home will have three bedrooms and two bathrooms.
  • Prefabricated and 3D-printed homes are increasingly being seen as solutions to our housing crisis.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.
A massive housing crisis and shortage has been tearing across the US.

A portion of the home with plumbing
The site of the 3D-printed home.

In an effort to help alleviate this issue, Habitat for Humanity in Central Arizona is now building a 3D-printed home in Tempe, Arizona …

Constructing the 3D-printed home
The site of the 3D-printed home.

Source: Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona

… designed in partnership with luxury architecture firm Candelaria Design.

Documents from the City of Tempe
Documents from the City of Tempe for the 3D-printed home.

According to Habitat for Humanity, 3D printing could be an economical way to address said crisis.

A person constructing the 3D-printed home
A person and machinery on the site of the 3D-printed home.

“When we consider the housing issues facing Arizona, the need for affordable homeownership solutions becomes clear,” Jason Barlow, president and CEO of Habitat Central Arizona, said in the press release.

People and machinery on the 3D-printed home's site
People and machinery on the site of the 3D-printed home.

Source: Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona

“If we can deliver decent, affordable, more energy-efficient homes at less cost, in less time and with less waste, we think that could be a real game-changer,” Barlow continued.

The home being 3D printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

Homebuilding methods like 3D printing or prefabrication are increasingly being considered as feasible alternatives to “traditional” construction.

The home being printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

Using a 3D printer to create homes is often seen as a more efficient and sustainable alternative to traditional construction methods.

People and machinery on the 3D-printed home's site
People and machinery on the site of the 3D-printed home.

“In addition to affordable homes, the market increasingly demands innovative housing concepts,” Yasin Torunoglu, the housing and spatial development alderman at the municipality of Eindhoven, said in regards to a different 3D-printed home in the Netherlands.

The home being 3D printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

Source: Insider

The home in Tempe is being built using both a 3D printer and “traditional” construction techniques.

The site of the 3D-printed home
The site of the 3D-printed home.

Between 70 to 80% of the home will be printed, including the walls.

The home being 3D printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

The team is relying on a printer from Germany-based Peri: the “build on-demand printer,” or the BOD2.

The 3D-printer
Machinery on the site of the 3D-printed home.

Peri is a European formwork and scaffolding maker, and its 3D printer has also been used to print another home and a three-floor apartment building in Germany.

The home being printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

Source: Insider

The printer was sent to the US in March and moved to Arizona in April. It officially began its printing work in Tempe one month later.

A person and machinery on the 3D-printed home's site
A person and machinery on the site of the 3D-printed home.

Peri describes the BOD2 as a “gantry printer.”

The home being printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

The printing mechanism can move left, right, forward, backward, up, and down …

The home being 3D printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

… which allows the printer head to move anywhere within the construction space.

The home being 3D printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

The printer can also be used while workers are completing other on-site construction projects, creating a human and machine team that works in harmony.

People on the 3D-printed home's site
People and machinery on the site of the 3D-printed home.

The home is still in progress, but Habitat for Humanity projects the project will be ready in August or September.

A portion of the home with wiring
The site of the 3D-printed home.

By October, the home could be occupied by “income-qualified homeowners,” according to the team.

Renderings of the 3D-printed home
The site of the 3D-printed home.

Source: Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona

In total, the home will sit at 2,433 square feet, but its living space will fall a bit shorter at 1,738 square feet.

The home being 3D printed with machinery and a person
The site of the 3D-printed home.

All of this space will then accommodate three bedrooms and two bathrooms.

overhead view of the site of the 3D-printed home.
The site of the 3D-printed home.

“Beyond our city borders, this project can serve as a model for other communities as we all work to meet the critical needs of families who truly are the faces of this growing housing affordability crisis,” Corey Woods, the mayor of Tempe, said in the press release.

The home being printed
The site of the 3D-printed home.

Source: Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona

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