One of the most urgent problems in the world is the rising number of ‘houseless’ people. Currently 1,5 billion people around the globe don’t own a house, and it is expected that by 2030 about 4 million people will have to live without it. ‘Houselessness’ does not mean that someone is homeless, but that the person lives in – for instance – a favela. In Brazil about 10 million people live in such kind of homes, which often don’t have access to clean water, good sanitation and are overcrowded. A Brazilian start-up called TriDom wants to use 3D printing to end houselessness within 15 years.
That is quite a statement to make, but TriDom has high aims and the start-up wants to use 3D printing technology to make something like this possible. The general idea is that by turning cranes into frameless 3D printers, they will be able to come up with more affordable homes. 3D printed homes are 75 percent cheaper to make than their handcrafted counterparts.
They are going to use the cranes as robotic arms, by putting a frameless 3D printer at the end of each crane. By using a 3D printer, the company wants to easily build multi-level and multi-purpose buildings. This implies that a building can be a shopping centre at a certain floor, while apartments could fill a different floor. Using such an approach to urban planning, the company wants to create space for businesses in crowded areas as well. On the other hand, such buildings could also lead to an increase of individualization.
And no-one wants to live in an individualized world, isn’t it? Therefore the start-up wants to let local communities create their own preferred urban map, by creating a game. The company states: ‘the problem with designer buildings nowadays and the designer community is that these are made without collaboration with the community. So governments and architects are making buildings were nobody wants to live in.’ The company got inspired by a project in Kenya for their game. ‘If you think that’s crazy, Minecraft and UN Habitat have a project in Kenya, where children can design their village and UN Habitat actually came and built it.’
The team is currently seeking funding, and it is making plans with 3D printing companies from the US as well as Europe. In four years they could be starting their work.
Image credits: TriDom.