Habitat for Humanity uses 3D printing technology to speed up the process of building homes for families in need of affordable housing.
The international non-profit organization and a list of advanced home building partners are rapidly printing exterior walls with liquid concrete, according to South West News Service (SWNS).
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Typically, the process would take around four weeks to build, but thanks to 3D printing, it’s been cut to 12 hours – as seen in the 1,200-square-foot home from subsidiary Habitat for Humanity Peninsula and Greater Williamsburg of the organization built in Virginia for a mother and son.
A Habitat for Humanity spokesperson told Fox News Digital that Virginia’s home is the second 3D-printed home she’s built, but it’s the first to be occupied.
“Virginia’s home’s exterior concrete walls were constructed using 3D printing technology, groundbreaking was in July 2021, and the home was completed in December,” Habitat wrote. in an email to Fox. “Owner, April, closed her affordable home loan in December 2021,”
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Habitat for Humanity’s Peninsula and Greater Williamsburg branch partnered with Alquist, a 3D-printed home building company, to build the three-bedroom, two-bathroom single-story home. According to the organization’s website, Alquist’s concrete method offers savings of up to 15 percent per square foot over preliminary lumber estimates. It is also said to be resistant to damage from tornadoes and hurricanes.
Every Alquist home is built with a proprietary monitoring system based on Virginia Tech’s Raspberry Pi, which is a university-designed smart home program that manages indoor environments, security, emergency protocols, energy efficiency, comfort and use of space.
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More than 2,200 miles from the first 3D-printed home occupied by Habitat is its very first 3D-printing business established in Tempe, Arizona.
This 3D printed house was built by Habitat for Humanity of Central Arizona and Design Candelaria, a residential architecture and lifestyle firm. Similar to Virginia’s home, the organization’s first 3D-printed build features three bedrooms and two bathrooms, but instead has 1,738 square feet of living space and 70-80% of it is 3D printed, including its exterior and interior walls.
“The house in Tempe, Arizona was dedicated in March 2021,” Habitat told Fox. “[It’s] expected to close in February 2022.”
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Families accepted into the Habitat for Humanity program have put in a few hundred labor hours to build their homes, which varies by affiliate of the organization. When program requirements are met and construction is complete, families in need of affordable housing are connected with lenders who can offer income-based repayment plans.
Current Freddie Mac estimates suggest that the United States has a housing supply shortfall of 3.8 million homes. The Federal Mortgage Corporation blames the country’s housing deficit in part on a slowdown in construction stemming from a shortage of skilled labor and rising raw material costs.
“If we can deliver decent, affordable and more energy-efficient homes for less, in less time and with less waste, we think that could be a game-changer. Think about the implications,” said Jason Barlow, Habitat for Humanity of Central Arizona President and CEO, in a statement.
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Habitat for Humanity and the University of Montana are next in line to develop a 3D-printed home, a spokesperson for the organization told Fox. Internationally, Habitat for Humanity has built a 3D printed house in India.