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A 3D printed habitat made with local, reusable materials

Italian 3D printing company WASP and Mario Cucinella Architects designed a circular housing model, created using entirely reusable, recyclable materials made from the local terrain.

Called TECLA, the housing model was developed using in-depth research undertaken by the School of Sustainability, a professional school founded by Mario Cucinella that combines education, research and practice. The research, conducted with the support of MA students from the Sustainable Environmental Design programme at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London, explored the cause and effects of homelessness. The result is a highly flexible envelope, designed to be resilient to any climate and energy-efficient in a way that traditional housing models are not.

The model was named TECLA after an imaginary city described by Italo Calvino in The Invisible Cities as a ‘continuous urban evolution’. It will be the first habitat to be built using multiple collaborative 3D printers. Designed by Mario Cucinella Architects and engineered and built by WASP, TECLA will be the first house to be entirely 3D printed using locally sourced clay, which will effectively make the building zero-waste.

WASP takes inspiration from the potter wasp, building houses using earth found on the spot. In 2018, the company presented their first house 3D printed of local earth, called Gaia (read more about this project here).

Images: WASP