Business

/

ArcaMax

Are you ready for a 3D-printed house? They're cheaper, stronger and long-lasting, developers say

David Lyons, South Florida Sun Sentinel on

Published in Business News

“Our buildings have superior materials and are stronger than most current building methods,” he said.

He added that the firm intends to build a luxury 4,500 square foot house on the Intracoastal Waterway in Lake Worth.

“We are approved for design and moving forward on structural engineering,” he said. “This will prove that building high-end and luxury homes is cheaper and better quality then conventional. We feel we are more resistant to mold, hurricane and flood. Our freedom of design makes the cost much lower because curves don’t add expensive forming costs. This home will have the first 3D-printed pool.”

Wannius said Printed Farms is also in negotiations to build a two-story house in Tampa for a client, and is looking to build a single-family home for the University of Miami, an AirBnB for another client and a luxury horse farm in 2022.

“Those projects have been hand-picked from 600 requests since February,” he said.

South Florida may have to wait

Despite the rising levels of interest, real estate and development experts in Broward, Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties said would-be buyers in the region will probably have to wait at least two to three years before 3D homes make a significant splash in the tri-county area.

“The housing industry hasn’t changed its overall methods of building homes in the past 50 years,” said Brad Hunter, president of Hunter Housing Economics in West Palm Beach. “Innovations like 3D and modular construction will start to gain popularity.”

“I think that there’s going to be an accelerated pace of innovation in housing in the next five to 10 years,” he said.

 

Mike Pappas, CEO of The Keyes Co. real estate services firm, agreed that 3D has a future.

“I think we are in the embryonic stage. The car is just starting to run,” he said. “There are people who are betting big on it. They are seeing this as the future. I heard the strength of the building because of the poured concrete is actually stronger than a typical home.”

The biggest potential holdup is that local building codes do not address 3D homes, lawyers told the South Florida Sun Sentinel.

“There are differences between us in the tri-county area and the Tallahassee neighborhood where that couple built their home,” said Fort Lauderdale attorney Keith Poliakoff of the Government Law Group.

The main difference is that hurricane-vulnerable South Florida is in a high-velocity wind zone. Projects need statewide or local approvals to ensure they meet stringent building codes.

“While the technology is novel ... it’s still a little bit off for them to be commonly used throughout the tri-county region for hurricane reasons and the ability to build larger structures,” Poliakoff said.

But Kyndra Light said 3D homes can arrive on a mass scale faster if builders, developers, regulators and others act in concert to make them happen.

“If we can all lock arms and walk down the Yellow Brick Road, so to speak, that is what it will take,” she said.

©2021 South Florida Sun Sentinel. Visit at sun-sentinel.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.