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3D Printed homes envisioned for the developing world

In order to help resolve the housing problem across developing countries, 3D printing firm Icon has partnered with a nonprofit organization New Story in order to develop a way to build cheap homes which can be set up in less than a day. About 1.2 city dwellers in the world do not have access to secure and affordable housing. The aim of the project is to print houses for less than $4000 which is about INR 2.6 lac, thus making it easier for the population to build a home.


A 3D printed home was showcased at the SXSW festival by Icon. It was a single story $4000 home in a 600-800 square foot space which can be built using the Vulcan 3D printer in less than a day. The low cost home was built using the cutting edge materials tested to high standards of comfort, safety and resiliency. The home also claimed to have a nearly zero waste production method and could be built under unpredictable constrains like limited power, water, labor and infrastructure. New Story is a nonprofit organization that is looking to build sustainable communities in order to offer basic infrastructure, education and earning opportunities.

This design collaboration between the 3D printing firm and the housing solution nonprofit took feedback from the communities these homes are meant to serve and allows for customization as and when required. Local labor can also operate the machines. It is planned to build a community of 100 homes in El Salvador by 2019 once the testing of material and design is complete. Earlier in 2014, a giant 3D concrete printer was developed to contour craft a 2,500 square foot house in 24 hours.

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