- Title: Saudi Arabia builds 3D-printed house to address housing shortage
- Date: 7th November 2018
- Summary: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA (NOVEMBER 6, 2018) (REUTERS) CEMENT POURING OUT OF MOBILE 3D CONCRETE PRINTER VARIOUS OF ENGINEER TESTING MOBILE 3D CONCRETE PRINTER GRAPHIC DEMONSTRATION OF 3D-PRINTED HOUSE PLAYING ON SCREEN / JOURNALISTS FILMING PROCESS (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) OFFICIAL AT MINISTRY OF HOUSING, MUHAB BENTEN, SAYING: "All of these tools and experiments aim to reduce cost, raise the quality (of building houses), create jobs and increase local content. The future has beautiful things hidden for us, but we must have a chain of experiences to get us to this beautiful future." MOBILE 3D CONCRETE PRINTER WORKING / PEOPLE WATCHING MOBILE 3D CONCRETE PRINTER WORKING MAN FILMING PROCESS WITH MOBILE PHONE VARIOUS OF MOBILE 3D CONCRETE PRINTER BUILDING CEMENT BLOCK VISITORS ARRIVING TO 3D HOUSE SIGN READING (Arabic): "Ministry of Housing" VARIOUS OF 3D-PRINTED HOUSE MAN SHOWING GRAPHIC DEMONSTRATION OF 3D-PRINTED HOUSE
- Embargoed: 21st November 2018 14:16
- Keywords: 3D-printed house in Saudi Arabia Vision 2030 Housing in Saudi Arabia
- Location: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA
- City: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA
- Country: Saudi Arabia
- Topics: Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA00195IBPLH
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: A Saudi government body has finished the construction of what is described as the country's first 3D-printed house located close to the King Khaled International Airport in Riyadh.
The project is the product of cooperation between the Saudi Ministry of Housing's Building Technology Stimulus Programme and the Dutch CyBe Construction company manufacturing up-to-date mobile 3D concrete printer.
It is part of a plan by the Housing Ministry allocating 18 billion riyals ($4.8 billion) to create an attractive investment environment for construction technology in the kingdom.
The initiative comes on the heels of the country's major 2030 development plan, which targets to build one million houses in five years with an investment of over $100 billion to address a looming housing crisis in Saudi Arabia.
Five Saudi engineers have participated with a team of Dutch experts to build the first unit, with plans to offer training and support to local Saudi expertise to carry out new stages of the project in the near future.
Developers have used thermal insulation technology for the unit to withstand high temperatures and tough weather conditions in Saudi Arabia. The building process of the 75-square-metres-unit took 25 hours to complete and tours were opened to visitors.
The overall cost of one unit is yet to be determined, with developers conducting at least five experiments of 3D-printed units yearly.
A 250-square metre (2,691 square feet) house in Saudi cities costs from 700,000 to 850,000 riyals ($186,000 to $226,000), Ibrahim Albuloushi, head of U.S. property consultant Jones Lang LaSalle in Saudi Arabia had said in May.
"The big challenge in fact is the issue of cost. Would these (3D-printed houses) be cheaper and more economical than traditional buildings or not? This is a question, which I think, with time and with the modernisation and improvement of the technology, no doubt it will be more economical because it is less time-consuming and less labour-intensive," real estate specialist, Ibrahim al-Sahn, said.
Some 500,000 Saudis are on a waiting list for the Saudi Real Estate Development Fund (REDF), an arm of the Housing Ministry which offers Saudis interest-free loans to buy state-backed houses which cost around 650,000 riyals.
The 3D-printed houses are meant to provide quick, cheap technology to address global housing needs. Dubai opened in 2016 what it said was the world's first functioning 3D-printed office building.
A mix of concrete, water and other materials are pumped through the 3D-printer, which then pours out a hybrid of concrete mortar that hardens as it is printed, producing layers of structures used to build a house.
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