A pioneering monolithic-style dome home for sale in Colorado

Rarely does a home with such a rich history and distinctive architecture become available. This extraordinary home — which sits on approximately 3 acres — was constructed in 1978 by the current, original owners. It was a time between two of the worst energy crises in the U.S. — 1973 and 1979 — caused by interruptions in petroleum exports from the Middle East. Oil prices skyrocketed, and many homeowners began to look for alternative energy sources to run their homes. Others decided the best solution was to use less energy.

Oregon school votes for new Monolithic Dome gymnasium

YAMHILL, OREGON — Residents of Yamhill-Carlton School District approved a $14.2 million bond to fund major repairs and build a new Monolithic Dome gymnasium. The state of Oregon will provide an additional $4 million to the district to repair the school’s aging buildings. The YCSD Bond Video demonstrates why the funds are needed and what they plan to repair.

Shell complete for Arcadia Monolithic Dome home

Finished Monolithic Dome home shell on the south bench of Providence, Utah. The house is named Arcadia. You can follow it’s progress on Facebook or Instagram

The concrete thinshell is complete for our new Monolithic Dome home. Javier, Hector and Jose did a fabulous job. They finished painting the interior last week and returned to Texas. It’s been a long process to get this dome built and now that it’s set in concrete (literally), we love it. It’s time to start work on the interior, but before we begin, let’s talk about how we got here.

Monolithic Dome safe room used nearly every day for performing arts

Lumberton Performing Arts Center in Lumberton, Texas.

In Lumberton, Texas a Monolithic Dome safe room was constructed for the school district and community. However, the community doesn’t call it a safe room. They call it the Lumberton Performing Arts Center. It houses a full stage for plays and all types of performances. The seating retracts to open the floor for Senior prom or a business Expo.

Library director discusses new dome during inflation

Kasson Public Library director Art Tiff (right) discussing the new library with local patron.

In an interview with the Post-Bulletin, Art Tiff — Kasson Public Library Director — discussed his feelings about the new Monolithic Dome library. “I’m elated,” the Kasson Public Library director said with a smile. “It has a great feeling of accomplishment. To finally see this day to come forward in front of us is tremendous.”

Curved inspiration in ice

“X, Y & Z” by Anna Baumgarte & Liubov Moskvina.

We are often asked if living in a Monolithic Dome is like living in a cave. It’s hard for some people to imagine a bright and beautiful interior that’s curved. Even more difficult is imagining the possibilities a dome structure provides. Usually people ask questions about hanging pictures or how well furniture fits against the dome wall. Sometimes, however, designers break through the square world and show us how it’s done. In Sweden, a temporary ice hotel is a masterpiece of curved architecture.

Two safe rooms approved for Tupelo, Mississippi

The Tupelo City Council approved two Monolithic Dome safe rooms — one for Lee Acres, Mississippi and the other for Theron Nichols Park, Mississippi. Each will be large enough to hold over 1,000 residents during a major storm. FEMA grants will pay 90 percent of the cost.

Monolithic Dome tourism at Johnson Creek’s new high school

Superintendent Michael Garvey and Johnson Creek School Board president Rick Kaltenberg tour grounds of the new Monolithic Dome high school under construction.

The Monolithic Dome high school in Johnson Creek, Wisconsin is also becoming a sort of tourist attraction. In a Wisconsin State Journal article, Superintendent Michael Garvey reports adding tour guide to his job. “Garvey frequently hands out hard hats and makes the rounds with taxpayers, area superintendents, construction design professionals and anyone else with a curiosity about the facility scheduled to open for the start of the 2016-17 school year.”

Ontario dome church’s long road

The 550-seat auditorium Monolithic Dome.

The 550-seat seat Monolithic Dome auditorium is nearly complete for the All Nations Church in Sudbury, Ontario. It’s been a long road. The dome and related buildings began construction in 2011. The congregation is paying for everything as they go. So far they raised $4.5 millon for the project.

The Disappearing Dome for sale

The “Disappearing Dome” is for sale. The beautiful dome house on the shore of Lake Michigan is currently used as a vacation home, but the owners would like to sell it. WBAY ran a nice story about the home.

Aerial video of Catoosa Safe Room under construction

Screen capture from aerial video of new Monolithic Dome FEMA safe room under construction.

Greg Miller submitted this great HD aerial video of the Catoosa Public Schools safe room under construction. You can see that work continues on the exterior while Monolithic construction crews work inside. The Monolithic Dome concrete shell is expected to be finished before Christmas.

First dome school in Wisconsin on schedule

Five Monolithic Domes under construction in Wisconsin will become the first Monolithic Dome school in the state. The Johnson Creek Middle School / High School will include classrooms, gymnasium, cafetorium (cafeteria and small auditorium), administration offices, and more. Good weather and hard work mean that construction is slightly ahead of schedule. Everyone is optimistic it will all be ready for the 2016-17 school year.

Great news story with timelapse of Catoosa Safe Room inflation

Catoosa cafeteria shortly after initial inflation. A conventional entry way is planned for the front.

NewsOn6.com has a great story about the a Monolithic Dome inflation in Catoosa, Oklahoma earlier this month. The 136-foot diameter facility will be a cafeteria for the school and a safe shelter during tornadoes for the students and community. There’s an excellent time-lapse of the inflation in the story.

Hartshorne passes $7.7 million bond for two Monolithic Domes

Rendering of new gymnasium at the high school.

The $7.7 million bond passed for two safe rooms for Hartshorne Public Schools. The larger, 150-foot diameter Monolithic Dome will serve as a full gymnasium at the high school. The smaller, 70-foot diameter Monolithic Dome will be a new library and computer center at the elementary school.

Hartshorne school bond proposed for gymnasium and library safe rooms

Plan for the new gymnasium includes seating for 1,200. The gym is expected to hold 3,000 during an emergency.

School officials in Hartshorne, Oklahoma want $7.7 million for two safe-rooms — or as we like to think of them — a brand-new, start-of-the-art gymnasium and computer center. It’s quite a different perspective if you think of money serving two purposes. The planned high school gymnasium would be a 150-foot diameter Monolithic Dome with four locker rooms, concessions, offices, a competition basketball court, and seating for 1,200. Plus it’s a tornado shelter! The elementary school gets a brand new library and computer center in a 70-foot diameter dome. And it’s a tornado shelter, too!

Boosting the Monolithic Dome for over 17 years

Grand Meadow K12 school in Minnesota.

The Spring Valley Tribune recently ran a story about Jerry Cleveland and his advocacy of the Monolithic Dome. Cleveland was instrumental in the construction of a K-12 school in Grand Meadow, Minnesota in 1998.

Arcadia — Our new dome home

Another rendering of the back of the house.

We’re building a new Monolithic Dome home. It’s been ten years since we left Texas and our wonderful Callisto dome house. Although we love living in Cache Valley — it’s like a swiss valley nestled in the northern Utah mountains — we miss our dome. I grew up in domes. My wife and kids lived in a dome for 10 years. I’m part of the dome business. It’s time to build a dome home.

A fireplace in the Monolithic Dome

Chuck Peters made his fireplace the centerpiece of his living room.

I’m often asked if there’s a trick to installing fireplaces in a Monolithic Dome. It’s actually pretty straightforward. The real question is, “Do you need the fireplace?” I see the romantic appeal of visiting around a glowing fire or the desire to reduce your heating bill. However, the energy efficiency of the dome typically changes a need for a fireplace into a want.

Dome homeowner wants to watch next hurricane — not evacuate

David Smith in front of his Monolithic Dome home near Orange, Texas.

For many, the mass evacuation for hurricane Rita was a bigger disaster than the storm. Millions left their homes and inched their way north in a Texas sized traffic jam. Many ran out of fuel while parked on the freeway. Others stayed behind only to face the peril of the storm itself. As Eric Besson of the Beaumont Enterprise reports, “Rita showed that, in the worst cases, no matter the decision, few avoid suffering.”

Landmark concrete dome home for sale — for a lot

It’s called the Flintstone house. Built in 1976 near San Francisco this all-concrete home was reportedly inspired by the first Monolithic Dome built in 1975. Whether it was or not, the house is a well known landmark in the community as well as a landmark design for inflatable concrete construction. And it’s for sale for the modest California price of $4.2 million.

Domed safe rooms disguised as gymnasium, cafeteria, and community center

Rendering of nearly complete safe-room / gymnasium for St. Joseph High School in Victoria, Texas.

The architect addressed an audience of school administrators. He proclaimed that no one can affordably build large safe rooms. The best a school could do are small rooms for refuge in an emergency. He was followed by David South who said, yes, you can build a large safe room — disguised as a gym.

News spreads about dome surviving wildfire

Seven ways to reduce risk of home becoming fuel for a wildfire.

John Belles was interviewed on NPR Morning Edition about his Monolithic Dome that survived the largest wildfire in Washington state history. It’s another in a prolific stream of news articles about the dome. We liked what John told the reporter, “You could build a square house that was nonflammable. There’s lots of advanced materials and whatnot. They still build out of stick, though.”

Monolithic Dome high school fine arts center opens next week

Santa Fe Trails High School main theater under construction.

The Santa Fe Trail High School in Carbondale, Kansas opens their new Monolithic Dome fine arts center in a week. The facility houses a 500 seat theater, band room and choir room. The Osage County Herald-Chronicle reports that the second dome, a gymnasium, is expected to open September 21.

Monolithic Dome saves man from fire

John Belles home after the wildfire.

If you missed our Facebook post or the news reports, a Monolithic Dome protected a man during a wildfire in Washington. John Belles rode out the fire inside his Monolithic Dome home that he built in 1999. The news report has spread worldwide.

Better arctic living in a Monolithic Dome

Monolithic Dome Photosphere design.

Time lapse construction video of a Monolithic Dome. Susane Havelka is a PhD candidate at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. They hope to demonstrate the advantages of the Monolithic Dome for people living in the arctic. They call their project the Protosphere.

Monolithic Dome made Wasuma gymnasium affordable and cool

Wasuma Elementary School gymnasium under construction.

The Monolithic Dome made it affordable for Wasuma Elementary to build a gymnasium and do so with style. Superintendent Glenn Reid told Mackenzie Mays with the Fresno Bee that he didn’t want people thinking they stepped into a Save Mart Center. Instead, they built a Monolithic Dome and “it does look pretty cool when you step inside.”

Win your own Monolithic Dome bed and breakfast

This unique and fantastic Monolithic Dome home could be yours for only an essay and an entry fee! Built by the current owners in 1999, the home sits on 10.37 acres of beautiful, rolling countryside in Lowell, Indiana. Just a hop, skip and a jump away from major shopping and dining locations, and just 45 minutes from downtown Chicago. Thyme for Bed is Chicagoland’s ONLY Monolithic Dome Bed & Breakfast!

The first fertilizer storage and a barbed wire plaque

The first Monolithic Dome fertilizer storage. Built in Chandler, Oklahoma, 1978.

The fourth Monolithic Dome built outside Idaho was in Chandler, Oklahoma for Bill Matthews in 1978. I had written an article for a fertilizer magazine explaining how a Monolithic Dome would be a terrific fertilizer storage. Bill read the article and flew to Idaho to see our domes. We hadn’t built a fertilizer storage, yet. His would be the first and it opened the gates to fertilizer domes all along the Mississippi River.

Tornado Dome Covers Pawnee, Oklahoma

Monolithic Dome tornado safe room in Pawnee, Oklahoma.

New Monolithic Dome safe room in Pawnee, Oklahoma is large enough for the whole town. Local TV station, KFOR, profiled the dome during a school tornado drill. As the students quietly walk to the dome, Superintendent Ned Williams explains the advantages and why they built the safe dome.

Gallery and profile of an early Monolithic Dome homeowner

AL.com recently posted a beautiful gallery and profile on one of the early Monolithic Dome homes and it’s owner, Chuck Peters. There are 33 beautiful shots of the house, but remember to click “Fullscreen” button below the picture.

Community center and safe room nears completion

Newly inflated Monolithic Dome under construction in Mercedes, Texas.

To construct a conventional building strong enough to withstand mother nature you normally build it like a bunker. It serves only one function and remains empty most of the time. With the new community center in Mercedes, Texas, they get twice the building for the price. Most of the year it’s a gym, learning center, and meeting space. During a Texas-sized storm, it’s a place of refuge for the town.

Oregon dome home construction adventures

Theresa and Richard Wisner shared their experiences with Oregon Coast Today about constructing a dome home. Tori Tobias interviews the Wisners and follows their ups and downs from “What have we done?” to “Walking into that house more than any other house I’ve ever lived in is comforting.”

Monolithic Dome houses as “disaster chic”

Bear markets are changing housing from McMansions to “disaster chic” according to Alan Hall. In his article for Elliottwave International, Hall writes that the bear markets of the last eight years have affected housing design. “In other words, eight years ago, as social mood was rolling over to the downside, McMansions were on the way out.”

Tupelo, Mississippi planning three Monolithic Dome safe shelters

Tupelo Public Schools and the City of Tupelo, Mississippi plan to construct three Monolithic Dome multipurpose buildings and safe rooms. As WTVA reports, the district wants the buildings for more than just a safe place during a storm but also as a new gym, classrooms, and more.

New design for Monolithic Dome curling rinks

A rendering of the combination dome and caterpillar curling rink design. This is a simple structure meant to be low cost to build and operate.

Curling is called chess on ice. It’s easy to see why. It requires a unique combination of strategy, teamwork, and skill. People love it. Its popularity has exploded — especially after it became an Olympic sport. With more players than ever, more curling rinks are needed. One person told me there are 35 proposed rinks for the Chicago area alone. We’ve been receiving more calls and decided to look at how a dedicated curling facility would work in the Monolithic Dome.

FEMA approves safe shelter grant for Dodge City Community College

Front entrance of the Dodge City Community College Activity Center

FEMA approved a grant for the Monolithic Dome safe shelter at Dodge City Community College. The dome will be their new student activities center and also the campus tornado safe room. Plans include a full basketball / volleyball court, locker rooms, classrooms, fitness center, student lounge, and more.

Spotlight on the Monolithic Dome Institute by our own county newspaper

We are a mystery. Thousands drive by our headquarters in Italy, Texas, and stare at the cowboy-boot-painted caterpillar. From the day our first dome inflated — 25 years ago — curious people stopped to see what we were about. Yet, many of our neighbors know little about our work. That’s why it’s nice to get some coverage by the local county newspaper.

Beautiful mountain cabin ready for spring finish

The Heywood family cabin started over a year ago and is almost complete. It is in the deep snow of northern Arizona so they have to wait until spring to complete it. The dome is 58-feet diameter with three levels surrounding a central gathering room.

Amazing use of concrete and dome shape for recreation park

Danish skate park is more than just a concrete jungle.

It may not be a Monolithic Dome, but it sure is cool. A skate-park in Denmark with concrete obstacles, a grass covered wood dome, climbing wall, and much more. It’s an amazing use of concrete, landscape design, and urban improvement. Just look at the grain silos they painted.