Largest 3D printing project sees further growth

14Trees, a joint venture company between Holcim and British International Investment, has announced some of the initial results of their efforts to 3D print up to 52 houses in Kilifi, Kenya, using a single BOD2 printer from Cobod.

The BOD2 printer was used for printing the houses in Kenya (Photo: Cobod)

Following the start of the project in October 2022, 14Trees completed the 3D printing of the walls of 10 houses in January 2023 after just 10 weeks using only one printer.

The project was awarded an EDGE Advanced sustainable design certification by the IFC — the World Bank’s development finance institution. It is the first time a 3D-printed housing project has achieved this certification.

14Trees says that they intend to get the full benefit of the large-scale project by experimenting and innovating as the project progresses.

During the subsequent phases, which consist of 10-15 houses each, several innovations will be included that will allow future tenants to design their homes and move away from the standardised 3D printed approach to one which fully leverages the technology’s customisation possibilities.

Commenting on the achievements, Francois Perrot, Managing Director of 14Trees said, “With 3D printing, you can solve two problems at once. You can build faster like we have shown here with our 10 houses in 10 weeks.

“At the same time, we can achieve better cost efficiency, which will help make affordable housing a reality for the majority. In addition, you can build with fewer materials, which preserves the resources of the planet for future generations.”

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