This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com
A traditional Dutch gabled canal house currently under construction won't use conventional materials like wood or bricks. Instead, Lego-like plastic blocks are being printed on site, where they will eventually be locked together.
Dus Architects, the Amsterdam-based architecture firm behind the project, describes it as the first full-sized 3D-printed house.
The house is printed with the KamerMaker, which means "room builder." Each room is printed separately on site before being assembled in the house. In the second phase of the project, the separate rooms will be assembled into connected floors and then stacked into the house. The rooms can be disconnected if the house needs to be relocated.
In the three weeks since "construction" started, a 3-meter high corner of the house has been printed, reported The Guardian.
The so-called 3D Print Canal House is an exhibition, research and proof of concept building project that aims to change the way homes are designed and built. The idea behind the project is to show how the industry can shift away from conventional materials that have to transported long distances to a more sustainable model. The architects say using 3D printed material instead of conventional materials will end waste and reduce transportation costs. Material can even be melted down and recycled.
For now, the plastic blocks will be back-filled with lightweight concrete for strength and insulation.
The house will also have a "smart data fireplace" at the center of the house. This fireplace is essentially the backbone of the home and will distribute all resources such as water, energy and smart devices.
Here's a video featuring the architects behind the 3D printed house.
Rendering: 3D Print Canal House