Dubai has made an entire office using the technology, and now a small group of employees are moving in. If you walk in, you wouldn’t know it was made by a printer. Dubai’s ruler quietly inaugurated the whitewashed buildings last week which AP described as “looking like a mashup of a Jetsons abode and an Apple Store”.
It took 17 days to print this place out, and $140,000, said Saif al-Aleeli, the CEO of a government initiative called the Dubai Future Foundation behind the project.
Features include a tree-shaded outdoor garden deck and LED lights that automatically adjust to the brightness outside.
Why 3-D printing?
“Because it makes sense in terms of cost, in terms of time-saving, in terms of efficiency,” the 29-year-old al-Aleeli said. “We really believe that this technology will revolutionise the construction, the development sector as well as other sectors, (including) the medical sector (and) consumable products.” Products made using 3-D printing are first designed on a computer and then printed out using a variety of materials, including metal, plastic and concrete.
The technology has been used in other construction projects too, including a Dutch canal house being raised in Amsterdam.
But the foundation says its Dubai office is the first “fully functional 3-D printed building,” constructed with full services and meant for daily use.
The building occupies prime real-estate between the city’s iconic twin Emirates Towers and the Dubai International Financial Center, which is a stand-in for a futuristic city in the forthcoming “Star Trek Beyond” film.
The site will serve as the temporary offices for between 12 and 20 foundation staff members for now. Dubai hopes it will kick-start its plans to transform the sheikhdom into an incubator for emerging technologies. It has an ambitious goal of using 3-D printing in a quarter of all buildings by 2030.