Courtesy ICON/Lake|Flato Architects

About a year ago, construction technologies company ICON—known for its 3D-printed homes and structures across the U.S. and Mexico—delivered a series of 400-square-foot, 3D-printed homes in Austin, Texas’ Community First! Village. In early 2021, the company broke into the mainstream housing market with the first 3D-printed homes for sale in America for developer 3Strands.

Now, ICON has unveiled its next generation Vulcan printing system and debuted its new “Exploration Series” of homes that aim to develop new design languages and architectural vernaculars with architects based on the opportunities created by construction-scale 3D printing.

ICON’s first home in the series, “House Zero,” is designed by Texas-based Lake|Flato Architects and features an elevated architectural and energy-efficient design that highlights the benefits of resiliency and sustainability found through 3D printing.

“House Zero will be the most incredible 3D-printed home in the world, because it was optimized and designed specifically to be 3D printed,” says Jason Ballard, co-founder and CEO at ICON. “This is the moment when people around the world will see more of the architectural design freedom and benefits of a 3D-printed house and believe that they too would want to live in one.”

Courtesy ICON

ICON’s proprietary Vulcan technology produces resilient, single-story homes faster than conventional construction methods and with less waste and more design freedom, says the firm. The new Vulcan system can print homes and structures up to 3,000 square feet, is 1.5 times larger, and two times faster than the previous ICON Vulcan 3D printers. Weighing in at 9,500 pounds, the robot mammoth is a digitally native approach to home construction featuring an automated control system and is operated with an ICON-developed app for mobile devices.

“We are hopeful this catalyzes widespread enthusiasm and excitement for the future of construction and architecture,” continues Ballard. “We’re getting ready to stand up manufacturing in our new facilities and begin larger-scale projects in anticipation of such a response.”

Located in East Austin, “House Zero” is under construction and features mid-century modernist ranch house aesthetics. The home will include over 2,000 square feet, three bedrooms, two-and-a-half baths, and a 350-square-foot accessory dwelling unit with one bed and one bath.

“It’s been a thrill for our team to design this home of the future and explore new ways to create high-performance shelter that celebrates craftsmanship, seeks increased efficiency, and eliminates steps in the construction process,” says Ashley Heeren, associate at Lake|Flato. “This welcoming, practical home design expands the performance capabilities of 3D-printing technology and is unlike any other home we’ve designed to date.”