Holcim completes first part of 3D-printed settlement


Train/Kilifi County – 14Trees has produced the first ten of 52 planned 3D-printed residential buildings in Kenya. 14Trees is a joint venture between Holcim and British International Investment. This is the first residential project from the printer to carry the World Bank’s EDGE certificate for sustainable design.

Holcim has announced the successful completion of the largest 3D-printed affordable housing complex to date. To this end, 14Trees, a joint venture between Holcim and British International Investment, has printed the first ten residential units in Kenya, according to a media release. A total of 52 affordable buildings are planned for the gated community called Mvule Gardens near the town of Kilifi. With each new phase of construction, Holcim says it is testing further innovations. The project is part of the Green Heart of Kenya regenerative ecosystem, a model for inclusive and climate resilient cities.

Building on 14Trees’ world-first 3D-printed school in Malawi, the Mvula Gardens complex will also help close the country’s infrastructure gap and create affordable, climate-friendly housing on a large scale. In addition, this new technology creates highly skilled jobs: local workers are trained as 3D machine assistants and specialists.

The 3D printing of these ten residential units was made possible with TectorPrint, Holcim’s innovative 3D printing ink, manufactured for the first time in Kenya. The sustainability profile of this project was awarded the EDGE Advanced Certificate for Sustainable Design by the International Finance Corporation, the development bank of the World Bank Group.

“I am very proud of 14Trees’ work in Africa, where our innovations in 3D printing technology are accelerating affordable and sustainable construction,” Miljan Gutovic, Holcim’s regional director for Europe, is quoted as saying in the release. “I look forward to 14Trees replicating these successes in Europe and other parts of Africa in the near future.” mm