Comparing Geodesic Domes to See Which Stacks Up Better

by Jamey MortonDecember 29, 2016

Living in the Future of the Past

According to the geodesic dome entry on Wikipedia: “A geodesic dome is a hemispherical thin-shell structure (lattice-shell) based on a network of geodesics (great circles) on the surface of a sphere or a hemisphere.” If that makes perfect sense to you, feel free to skip the rest of the intro and get right to the listings (below). If not, hang on here for a second.

First of all, forget about “geodesics” and picture a dome made of interlocking triangles that needs no internal support to stay standing. In fact, in many ways, they can be more structurally stable than traditionally constructed buildings.

But they do have some drawbacks. While no two geodesic domes are exactly alike, they all look very similar and have a very distinctive look that may not be for everyone. Domes also have inherent challenges with supporting the infrastructure that most expect a contemporary home to come with.

Little things like electrical wiring and HVAC duct work have to be cleverly dealt with in a home that requires no interior walls to remain standing. Let’s take a look at three examples currently available on the market for a range of prices.

Minnesota Charm

This lakeside brown charmer in the Southeast Minnesota town of Albert Lea, gets around the interior wall issue, as it is constructed (as many domes are) on a short foundation wall that likely contains the majority of the home’s electrical, plumbing, and HVAC infrastructure. It’s a three-bedroom, three-bath home with vaulted (domed) ceilings and a full basement. It even comes with a partially domed, attached garage and is still the most reasonably priced dome on our list, most likely due to its location in rural Minnesota.
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Blue Virginia Dome

If brown isn’t your style, maybe this blue Virginia dome is: with four bedrooms and four bathrooms, situated on sixty rural acres surrounded by wildlife-filled woods and with views in nearly all directions. It’s got dormers built out on three sides with alternate entrances and decks, and like the brown Minnesota dome, is a half sphere built on a short wall that assuredly carries most of the home’s wiring and plumbing.
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Maryland Opulence

Last up in our roundup of circles made of triangles, is this suburban Maryland beauty. A true dome built almost entirely on top of a lower story that supports both the architecture of the home, a full deck, and the home’s infrastructure, this three-bed three-bath home comes with an updated tennis court, an in-ground pool, and a pool house covered in solar panels. You can truly have the best of alternative architecture and the best of sustainable living, alongside luxury and all in one package.
WA9775911 - Exterior (Front)

Of Triangles and Circles

You may find the geodesic dome a pleasing sight. You might think it’s the ugliest architectural style that humankind has ever come up with. Dome enthusiasts get it, though, there’s something about the open interior space that constructing a house in this manner allows you that is hard to find in most other architectural styles. That and giving someone directions to your home might never be easier. After all, how many domes are on your block?

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About The Author
Jamey Morton
A huge fan of sci-fi and fantasy since he was a kid, Jamey loves writing about topics that, whether haunted or just plain quirky, are out of the ordinary. Nothing delights Jamey more than spotting a medieval castle in the middle of New Jersey or a chalet on the coast Florida, and he feels he owes it to the American public to share his findings.

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