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A new construction method may help increase stock of affordable housing

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Tom Flanigan
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Crews position the very first wall panel at the construction site

Like almost everywhere else, Tallahassee is facing an affordable housing crisis. Now a new method of homebuilding could help bring home ownership within the reach of more people.
The construction site is on the corner of Putnam Drive and Brighton Road on the city's South Side. But instead of putting up wooden framing, crews are erecting pre-built wall panels that combine exterior and interior surfaces along with hefty insulation between the two. Bill Wilson is with Graceful Solutions, the building company.

We should be able to put a 1,200 foot house under roof in about 7 day," he said as the initial wall section was placed in a matter of minutes.

The method, he explained, is much faster than regular home construction. It also costs less and is environmentally friendly.

"When it cures, it actually absords CO2, so we have a net-negative carbon footprint in the product. It lasts forever."

Wilson said the finished houses should be priced around twenty-five percent less than comparable homes built by conventional methods. A total of 4 units are slated to be built on this particular site, he added, with 17 more set to rise soon about 4 blocks away.

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Tom Flanigan has been with WFSU News since 2006, focusing on covering local personalities, issues, and organizations. He began his broadcast career more than 30 years before that and covered news for several radio stations in Florida, Texas, and his home state of Maryland.

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