Alquist 3D will build 200 homes in the “world’s largest 3D printing construction project”
Construction 3D printing company Alquist 3D has announced plans to build 200 homes in the US state of Virginia.
After completing the construction of the “first owner-occupied 3D printed house” earlier this year, Alquist 3D has now revealed that it aims to deliver the largest construction project made with the technology to date, through Pulaski and Roanoke State. Given the rapidly growing labor force in the region, it should serve as an ideal test bed to demonstrate the effectiveness of 3D printing in creating new accessible homes.
“With changing migration patterns due to the pandemic, climate and economic concerns, small communities like Pulaski have a huge need – and an incredible opportunity – to develop affordable housing for new residents,” said Zachary Mannheimer, founder and CEO of Alquist 3D. “By 3D printing these homes, Alquist and our partners will accelerate Pulaski and Roanoke’s ability to capitalize on current trends and attract new workers to this wonderful Southwestern Virginia community.
Looking for affordable housing
While there are now many construction 3D printing start-ups, Alquist 3D stands out as one that seeks to specifically use technology to solve the “affordable housing crisis” in the United States. After devoting more than four years to R&D on additive manufacturing alongside partner Atlas Community Studios, the company came up with a plan to solve this problem, by 3D printing large but affordable family homes.
The first of these Alquist 3D builds was done in partnership with Virginia Tech University with support from the City of Richmond’s Virginia Housing Authority. That project was quickly followed by another late last year with the nonprofit Habitat for Humanity, which saw him create a three-bed 3D-printed house with 1,200 sq.ft. squares of living space, via a BOD2 system provided by the PERI group.
At the time, the house, whose exterior would have been built in just 28 hours, was hailed by Mannheimer as a demonstration of the speed and durability that 3D printing could help bring to the US construction market. of houses.
“Concrete 3D printing reduces the amount of waste typically found on a job site, and our energy savings are significant,” Mannheimer said in January. “Yet concrete is far from the most environmentally friendly material, and we are working with partners to create a more environmentally friendly material next year. We also hope that this new technology will be another way to build more affordable homes for families. »
“Habitat and Alquist share a similar mission: to build affordable housing. We both believe in the American Dream of home ownership, and by partnering, we can make that dream come true for more families.
Addressing Virginia’s Housing Needs
Following the success of its initial builds in Richmond and Williamsburg, Alquist 3D has now unveiled plans to build large-scale homes for Pulaski workers. As Volvo, Blue Star Manufacturing and American Glove Innovations expand to create 3,000 more jobs in the city, the company says “housing demand is skyrocketing” there.
Also citing an article based on a report by the Brooking Institute, which highlights Virginia’s New River Valley as one of the fastest growing regions in the United States for tech jobs, Alquist 3D therefore highlighted the need for welcome the workers.
To meet this demand, the company is about to start work on its next batch of 3D-printed homes. However, unlike his previous versions, which were made using a COBOD machine, his latest ones are set to be made using Black Buffalo 3D’s “NEXCON”, a gantry system capable of creating structures at three floors.
With a top speed that is reportedly limited by the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration to 9.8 inches per second and 12-hour continuous run capabilities, the machine is capable of building 1,000 square foot structures. in less than 20 hours.
To make material loading as easy as possible, the NEXCON nozzle features an open hopper design and interchangeable tips, allowing users to manually inspect and change heads, depending on the application. The unit is also available with the company’s proprietary ink blends, which are said to offer better strength and durability than mortars, another aspect that could benefit new Alquist 3D releases.
Although Alquist 3D has yet to release a timeline for the construction of its 200 3D-printed homes, it did reveal that the project will begin this Friday, April 29, 2022. The event is expected to begin with a tech demo near the two first 3D printed homes in Pulaski, across from a site at 205 Pierce Avenue, Pulaski, Virginia 24301.
The home building potential of 3D printing
Alquist 3D’s next housing project is one of many now looking to apply building 3D printing technologies on a much larger scale than ever before. Unsurprisingly, given that it’s one of the first leaders in an emerging market, ICON is committed to building one of the biggest of them all, a community of 100 3D printed homes.
Apis Cor, which recently participated in 3D Printing Industry’s “Exploring 3D Printing’s Emerging Construction Industry” webinar, also announced a series of new affordable 3D printing housing projects earlier this month. Specifically, working with SMASH and Eden Village Wilmington, the company plans to build low-cost housing in South Florida and North Carolina.
Elsewhere, companies like Serendix Partners are taking home building the other way, 3D printing tiny, futuristic spherical homes. In March 2022, the company was reportedly able to additively manufacture a 107.6-square-foot, 20,000-kilogram habitable structure in just 24 hours that met Japanese and European seismic standards for insulation.
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Image shown shows Black Buffalo 3D’s NEXCON construction 3D printer. Image via Black Buffalo 3D.