ICON, BIG, and LENNAR team up to build a 3D printed neighborhood by using high robotic technology, software, and material which is a project in response to the affordable housing shortage in Austin, Texas. The news solidifies a partnership that started with Lennar’s investment in Austin-based ICON’s recent $207 million funding round, and it paves the way for inexpensive, technology-driven houses to meet expanding demand. The project is about to break ground in 2022 and 100 homes are projected to be built.
ICON’s 3D printing technology creates more durable, energy-efficient houses quicker than traditional building techniques, with less waste and greater design flexibility, keeping construction projects on track and on budget. ICON’s Vulcan construction system was designed and engineered from the ground up to deliver homes and structures up to 3,000 square feet that are built to the International Building Code (IBC) structural code standard and expected to last as long as or longer than standard Concrete Masonry Unit (CMU) built homes. ICON’s patented wall system and advanced materials outperform standard construction materials, resulting in safer, more robust buildings that can resist harsh weather, drastically decrease the effect of natural catastrophes, and be printed at high rates and scale.
“Lennar has always pushed the frontiers of technical innovation in order to make great houses cheap, and 3D printing is a huge step forward. We’re looking forward to working with ICON in the next years to create answers to new difficulties.” Stated Eric Feder, President of LENX.
“ICON exists to respond to the worldwide housing problem and to put our technology to work for the greater good,” stated Jason Ballard, co-founder, and CEO of ICON. “Not only can construction-scale 3D printing offer higher-quality houses quicker and more inexpensively, but fleets of printers have the potential to improve the way whole communities are developed.” The United States is in need of around 5 million new houses, therefore there is a pressing need to boost supply quickly without sacrificing quality, beauty, or sustainability, which is precisely our technology’s strength. Partnering with Lennar, an exclusive top-tier homebuilder with a dedication to innovation is an honor and a big milestone for ICON. We think this will be a watershed point in the history of community-scale development, with the future bridging the gap between the present and the future.”
“As additive manufacturing becomes more widely accepted by the industry, it has the potential to alter the built environment,” stated Martin Voelkle, Partner, BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group. “We are able to see this innovative technology spread out to the biggest potential audience by teaming with ICON and Lennar.” The solar roofs and 3D-printed architecture are big milestones in reducing waste in the construction process, as well as making our houses more robust, sustainable, and energy self-sufficient.”
LENX, which promotes a targeted approach inside Lennar to integrate digital solutions throughout the homebuilding business, supported Lennar’s participation in ICON’s Series B funding round in August. LENX provides hands-on mentorship and guidance from senior leaders of Lennar’s management team, as well as a marquee opportunity to provide products and technology to Lennar customers, allowing portfolio companies to scale at an unprecedented pace, thanks to a clearly defined strategy of investing in technology companies directly adjacent to Lennar’s core homebuilding operations and a disciplined investment process.