CM looks at how timber is being used to deliver striking designs, accelerate programmes and restore historic buildings on construction projects around the world
Sustainable services built with timber
A glulam timber structure, with a curvilinear living roof, is the most striking design feature of one of the most sustainable motorway services on the UK network. Leeds Skelton Lake Services on the M1 in Yorkshire, which features EV charging using 100% renewable energy, was designed by Corstorphine + Wright and constructed by Morgan Sindall.
Timber roofs speed up Bristol housing scheme
Prefabricated timber pitched roof cassettes from Taylor Lane were used by developer Acorn on Brooks Dye Works in Bristol. The cassettes were manufactured offsite in Herefordshire and assembled onsite in around 10 days, a saving of almost two weeks compared to a traditional loose-cut roof. The 80-home site is due for completion in July 2022.
Timber lights up Pears Building atrium
At the Pears Building, the new Institute of Immunity and Transplantation at the Royal Free Hospital in London, timber features strongly in the light-filled atrium, with dramatic acoustic panelling, bespoke timber seating pods, oak stair treads and handrails. Specialist joinery supplier Avi Contracts worked on the installation with main contractor Willmott Dixon.
Glulam features in super sustainable Earth Lab
Earth Lab, a new learning centre in Oxfordshire for environmental charity Earth Trust, has been built using sustainable construction methods including a glulam timber frame, cedar shingle casing, straw bale insulation panels and a rammed earth wall. Contractor Beard will hand over the £1.3m project in March, with an internal fit out before the centre’s opening in the autumn.
Milwaukee set for world’s tallest wooden building
Currently under construction, the Ascent tower in Milwaukee, USA, will soon be the tallest timber structure on earth. The apartment building uses a system of glued-laminated timber beams and columns, which support cross-laminated timber floors, with two concrete cores providing lateral stability. Korb & Associates Architects designed the building, which will open in 2022.
Stepnell restores historic Royal Shakespeare Company building
The Royal Shakespeare Company’s costume workshop in Stratford-upon-Avon has been restored by contractor Stepnell, including sensitive works to the timber roof structure of the Grade II-listed building. The work required a thorough heritage and structural survey, with the majority of the existing structure retained, and supplemented with new sympathetically sourced timber.