Are ‘Dome Style Homes” the Next Big Thing?

Dome homes may be strong enough to withstand the force of an EF5 tornado, a mammoth hurricane, and even a powerful earthquake. If made of concrete, may deflect flying debris, such as trees and cars, and the roofs won’t blow off in a high-wind storm.

“People feel safer in a dome,” says Nanette South Clark, a design engineer with Monolithic Dome Institute. “Domes have a double curvature like an egg, so they’re very strong. They’re the buildings of the future.”

Gary Clark, vice president of Monolithic sales and marketing, insists that dome homes are the “strongest disaster-preventative shape that can be built for the dollar.”

The company has been building dome homes for residential and commercial use, and it concentrates on natural disaster-prone areas in the U.S. Dome homes cost between $125 and $135 a square foot to build, or about $125,000 to $135,000. That’s comparable to the average cost of a 1,000-square-foot home in Texas, according to Monolithic Dome.

Meteorologists are predicting more violent weather systems in the future, which may prompt more home owners worried about the safety of their homes to seek alternative structures that can withstand intense storms, dome advocates say.

Dome homes have been nicknamed “ball houses,” “igloos,” and “bubbles.”

Source: “Why your next home may look more like a snow globe,” CNBC (Dec. 29, 2013)