Woodbury University in Los Angeles is piloting 3D-printed homes that can be finished as fast as 15 months.
In most parts of the world, residential construction is largely completed using traditional construction methods and materials. Students at Woodbury University are seeking to flip this model on its head by piloting 3D printing technology with a lower carbon-producing cement mix to produce environmentally friendly housing. While it is not the first time 3D printing has been proposed to produce housing, the fast 15-month (from concept to near completion) timeframe and low carbon materials can possibly be game changers. It is worth noting that the structure is not entirely complete and ready for habitation, but except for some internal drywall and other final details, the unit is pretty close.
If this technology is scaleable, it may be useful in helping to tackle Maryland’s housing crisis. Over the last few decades, home production has gone through an evolution, with traditional construction becoming but just one option developers can choose. Two popular alternatives are manufactured and modular housing, where units are produced and largely assembled off-site. Manufactured housing is mostly traditional single-family housing produced in a factory and installed on site, while modular focuses on more dense developments with units produced off-site and connected together like a mostly built Lego set. By adding 3D printing to the mix, developers will have yet another option to get more units completed faster.