If I had a pound for every time I have seen an invention that promised to revolutionise house building I would have at least £32.50 by now. This latest one is a 3D printer for concrete, simply load up the shape and dimensions of what you want to build and watch it chug away building up layer upon layer of concrete.
It looks a lot of fun and I would love to see it work but somehow I suspect it is destined for the dustbin of history. The inventor’s claim that it could lead to cheap housing might well be true if we had cheap land. It isn’t labour that pushes up the price of houses, what makes homes expensive is the rationing of land through the planning process. I am not suggesting that we allow a free for all but we should at least acknowledge that it is land prices not labour that pushes prices beyond the reach of even those who build them. A 3D printer will not change that.
Want to know more? Read Ross Brooks’ article on contour crafting at PSFK.