Texas Connects Us: Dome Homes - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Texas Connects Us: Dome Homes

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Have you ever wondered what that concrete caterpillar is down in Italy, Texas? NBC 5's Kris Gutierrez went to find out. (Published Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016)

    You've probably seen the large concrete caterpillar along Interstate 35 down in Italy, Texas.

    Have you ever wondered what's inside it?

    Gary Clark, with the Monolithic Dome Institute, explains, the caterpillar is where his dome homes find their form.

    It's a manufacturing hub, where builders cut the heavy fabric that inflates to help support the dome roof.

    Built out of concrete, their shape and structural integrity make dome homes more energy efficient, fire proof and stronger than a typical home.

    "My home is designed to withstand winds in excess of 250 to 300 mph and all the flying debris that goes with it," Clark said about his dome home.

    In Italy, there's an entire neighborhood of dome homes.

    "A little Mayberry town," said resident Al Norris.

    Norris rents a studio-sized dome for $600 a month.

    "Kitchen, bedroom, living area, bathroom, it's all I need," he said.

    "It kinda reminds me of the hobbit or Star Wars," added neighbor Charles Millard.

    "A lot of people come by to see, what are these things," Clark said. "And they're kind of pleasantly surprised when they find out how normal they really can be. Beauty actually is in the eyes of the beholder. Every home in America ought to be like this."

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