What’s next for Mario Cucinella, the architect behind TECLA

Image credit Iago Corazza

“The difference between a person pouring concrete versus a machine pouring concrete, I don’t find as interesting. The work that captures my imagination is about materials, and how we can mitigate carbon costs such as transport and treatment. There may still be a future where we use concrete in an intelligent, measured, strategic way, but if we can reduce that material use by 85%, and replaced it with less carbon-intensive materials such as raw earth, this is a massive carbon reduction for us as a civilization.” 

Mario Cucinelli is the architect behind TECLA, an almost zero emission project, which uses 3D printing to construct housing out of raw earth. As seen in the above image the walls have an organic cave-like curvature, providing structural stability but also acting as a thermal barrier. The project can adapt its shape in relation to its climate and latitude.  

Consuming an average of 6kW of energy and needing a team of just two people, the project responds to both the climate emergency and the growing global housing crisis. 

TECLA is therefore a first step in a new direction. People sometimes ask me when we will create another TECLA, and I say: “We made this first step. We’ll make another step, but we need other architects to take what we’ve done, and make their own steps. Maybe we will take the third step together.” This is a moment where we need to share. We cannot solve this crisis ourselves, working in isolation from each other. 

Visit Archinect to read the full interview with Mario Cucinellii. 

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