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Panama City leaders opt out of 3D built homes for alternative option

Published: Oct. 15, 2020 at 5:36 PM CDT
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG) - Build a sturdy and affordable home as quickly as possible. That’s the challenge Panama City leaders are tackling.

“We started with a variety of products including shipping containers, homes that once you’re done with them you wouldn’t even know that it started as a container, to steel panelized homes, to 3D printed concrete homes,” Assistant City Manager Jared Jones said.

More than a year ago, the city received a $100,000 grant from the Ironman Foundation slated for the construction of 3D homes. However, that money has since been diverted.

“FSU is working on this. They’re actually going to instruct and teach people how to build a 3D home and that’s what we’re hoping to use that money for,” Jones said.

Instead, leaders settled on easily assembled steel panelized homes that can be built in 30 to 45 days.

“Once they’re done, you’d never know that the steel panels exist. Traditional dry wall on the inside, hard board on the outside, and they’re extremely strong,” Jones said.

So strong that he said they can withstand 167 mile per hour winds.

The company responsible for them is appropriately named “Out of the Box.”

“The walls are already made, they’re already ready to go, they just stand them up," Jones said. "It’s all steel studs on the inside so it’s really just, you’re connecting the pieces.”

Homes will start at $150,000.

″Once we offer that home for $150,000 for that buyer, we’ve got a ReHouse Bay program. If that buyer qualifies, they can receive anywhere between $25,000 and $50,000 of subsidy depending on income," Jones said.

Jones added not only are the homes easily deployable, but he hopes they will also raise values in this Glenwood community area.

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