Is 3D printing the future of social housing?


Francky Trichet, the council’s lead on technology and innovation, says the purpose of the project was to see whether this type of construction could become mainstream for housing,

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With curved walls designed to reduce the effects of humidity and digital controls for disabled people, this house could be an expensive realisation of an architect’s vision.

But having taken 54 hours to print – with four more months for contractors to add in things such as windows, doors and the roof – its cost of around ‘176,000 to build makes it 20% cheaper than an identical construction using more traditional solutions.

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The 95m (1022ft) square house – built for a family of five with four bedrooms and a big central space in Nantes – is a collaboration between the city council, a housing association and University of Nantes.

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Is 3D printing the future of social housing?

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Francky Trichet, the council’s lead on technology and innovation, says the purpose of the project was to see whether this type of construction could become mainstream for housing, and whether its principles could be applied to other communal buildings, such as sports halls.

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“For 2,000 years there hasn’t been a change in the paradigm of the construction process. We wanted to sweep this whole construction process away,” he says.

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Now, he says, their work will “force” private companies to “take the pen” and continue the narrative.

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Readers Write: Adoption, poverty, affordable housing, wild

Thank you to the Star Tribune for shining a spotlight on adoption in a June 24 front-page article. We are grateful to the two families who shared their adoption experience. While the story provided a comprehensive overview on adoption and recent trends, the headline — “Adoption turns into rare choice” — might have left readers thinking that adoption is uncommon or no longer a viable option, which is not the case.

While international adoption numbers are down, in Minnesota there are 766 kids in foster care waiting for an adoptive home, according to the Minnesota Department of Human Services. This number has doubled in the last eight years. Older children and sibling groups in other countries are also waiting for a loving, adoptive family.

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