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A 36-unit student housing block will be 3D-printed in Denmark — see what it could be like to live in

Brittany Chang   

A 36-unit student housing block will be 3D-printed in Denmark — see what it could be like to live in
  • Construction on a cluster of 36 3D-printed student homes is set to begin in 2024 in Denmark.
  • The companies behind it say it'll be Europe's largest 3D-printing construction project.

Some students in Holstebro, Denmark could soon say goodbye to normal dorms and hello to 3D-printed homes.

In 2024, 3DCP Group and design firm SAGA Space Architects say they will build a non-profit student housing community with help from a 3D printer. If you're familiar with the niche construction tech, 3DCP Group should sound familiar: The company has been prolific in the growing industry with recent projects like a 400-square-foot home completed in five weeks and Guatemala's first 3D-printed tiny home. SAGA Space Architects also helped design both projects.

The construction lot, presently an unused patch of old trees, is located near VIA University College's Holstebro campus. When this project is complete, 3DCP Group and SAGA Space Architects say this space — formerly an industrial meatpacking site — will transform into 36 homes and Europe's biggest 3D-printing project.

When complete, the Skovsporet community will have six buildings each with six apartments ranging from 420 square feet to almost 540 square feet, according to SAGA and 3DCP's plan. No matter the size, all should have space for a kitchen, laundry, bedroom, bathroom, and living room.

Most mass-market construction 3D printers only extrude concrete. But because the companies only plan to print the walls, renderings don't show these apartments looking dark and drab. Instead, materials like wood structures and acoustic ceilings would be used to brighten and complete the remaining structure.

Outside, the plan is to surround these student homes with plants, parking spots for bicycles and electric vehicles, walking trails, and social spaces in the form of courtyards. To maintain 95% of the site's existing trees, most of the printing would take place between these plants, according to the companies.

The project's developer, housing non-profit NordvestBo, will select future tenants from a pool of applications "assuming there will be a 'first come, first served' aspect," Sebastian Aristotelis, cofounder of SAGA Space Architects, told Insider in an email.

The plan is to develop the site throughout 2024 with the goal of completing it by the end of the year, Aristotelis says. He could not detail the project's cost but did say the team has to follow the government of Denmark's budget for social housing "based on the square meter and a few other parameters."

Using 3D printers on construction sites is more than just an attention-grabbing way to build homes. Like Aristotelis, proponents of 3D printing construction believe the tech can build unique high-quality homes while saving time, waste, and money.

Philip Lund-Nielsen, the cofounder of popular construction 3D printer manufacturer COBOD, previously told Insider that the cost of using 3D printers is currently generally equivalent to or incrementally more expensive than traditional home building methods. But as more startups and real estate developers continue turning to printers, the cheaper this construction tech could become.

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