Swiss cement maker Holcim and UK development financier CDC have launched a joint venture that will print an affordable housing project in Kenya.
The 14Trees venture will construct a 52-unit complex in Mvule Gardens, north of the port city of Mombasa.
Designed by African and American architect MASS Design Group, Mvule Gardens will be part of the “Green Heart of Kenya” development, which is intended to be a showcase for climate-resilient neighbourhoods.
Last year, a Holcim and CDC Group team announced plans to print a house and school in Malawi. Since then, Holcim has worked on improving the speed of the printing process and the strength of the results.
Jan Jenisch, Holcim’s chief executive, said: “With today’s rapid urbanisation, over 3 billion people are expected to need affordable housing by 2030. This issue is most acute in Africa, with countries like Kenya already facing an estimated shortage of 2 million houses. By deploying 3D printing, we can address this infrastructure gap at scale to increase living standards for all.”
Tenbite Ermias, CDC Africa’s managing director, said: “14Trees is pioneering the use of leading edge technology to address one of Africa’s most pressing development needs, affordable housing, to create life-changing infrastructure for whole communities.”
Construction of Mvule Gardens will start at the beginning of 2022.