A Meeting Inside the World’s First 3D Printed Office Building

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The world’s first functional 3D printed office building at the Dubai Future Foundation. Image (c) Anushka Wijesinha

During a recent visit to Dubai, for the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting on Global Future Councils, we visited the Dubai Future Foundation that is at the cutting edge of driving innovation and foresight in the emirate. We were fortunate to have the final group session of our Council (the ‘Global Future Council on Innovation Ecosystems’) at a very special venue – the world’s first functional 3D printed office building, pictured here. It was made in just 17 days. The real innovation, we were told, was the materials science – developing a concrete mixture that dries super fast, in order to have the ‘layers’ print one after the other. The aim was to go from talking about the concept to demonstrating that it’s possible. The leadership had declared a goal that 25% of all buildings in Dubai must be 3D printed by 2025, to cut down on time and waste of resources. So the Dubai Future Foundation (which sits under the ‘Cabinet Minister for the Future of UAE’) wanted to show that it’s possible and practical, not just a concept. So, they made this. Pictured below is the CEO of the Dubai Future Foundation – Khalfan. A fantastic guy, who is leading a lot of this work.

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