This is a wall comprised of three layers. The outer layer is two and half inches of expanded polystyrene foam. The middle layer is a six inch, steel reinforced, concrete wall, and the inner layer is another two and half inches of expanded polystyrene foam. These walls are typically used for the exterior walls of the home.
There are several benefits to the ICF (insulated concrete form wall), the first being energy efficiency. The energy required to heat and cool these homes is more than 50% less than typical builds. Another benefit is comfort, as a result of the reduced air infiltration, the interior temperatures of the home do not move as often as a typically built home. Finally, the ICF walls provide safety in severe weather conditions.
ICF constructed homes cost slightly more than a typical build. However, the monthly cost savings from energy consumption offsets this additional cost of the build.
There are no architectural limitations when building with ICF. If anything, it opens doors for new opportunities such as larger open indoor and outdoor living spaces.