Technology pundits have pushed the benefits of 3D printing and additive manufacturing for years, but outside of a few pilot projects, the technology has remained more concept than reality for the AEC industry.
The Office of the Future in Dubai represents the most audacious project to date. Dedicated in May 2016, the 2,600-sf, fully functioning office building kicked off Dubai’s strategy to make the city a 3D printing hub by 2030.
The global Building Team (Dubai, China, Chicago, and New York) had to produce a code-compliant structure that accommodated key building systems: plumbing, electric, HVAC, and telecommunications. Among the team’s innovations: the design of MEP infrastructure cavities that doubled as reinforcement for the core structure.
The building took only 17 days to print and two days to assemble on the job site. The team says the 3D-printing process reduced labor costs by 80% and construction waste by 60%.
Building Team – Submitting firm, MEP engineer Syska Hennessy Group Owner Dubai Future Foundation Architects Gensler, Killa Design Structural engineer Thornton Tomasetti Contractor China State Construction Construction manager Projex
General Information – Size 2,600 sf Construction cost Withheld at owner’s request Construction time February 2016 to May 2016 Delivery method Design-build