Specifier Review
CLT – Reaching New Horizons

CLT – Reaching New Horizons


Engineered timber has made significant advances over the past decade. Cross laminated timber (CLT) in particular, has been taken to places never before predicted. There has been growing global support for the prioritisation of CLT – particularly in the development of medium rise buildings – which has led to monumental changes in the London skyline and other cities around the world. The use of solid wood in the UK is rising – circa 320 solid timber projects have been completed so far, with about 160 of them being delivered in the past four years.

Banyan Wharf, Wenlock Road Photo credit: X-LAM Alliance
Banyan Wharf, Wenlock Road Photo credit: X-LAM Alliance

The London Borough of Hackney introduced a ‘Timber First’ strategy in 2012. The environmentally conscious area stated that it wanted to create a ‘presumption in favour’ of using wood because of its advantages in terms of embodied carbon. This has led to some of the most impressive, ground-breaking timber buildings to be constructed within this area. Banyan Wharf is one of the most important residential buildings in London. Situated in Hackney, this 10 storey build is the tallest timber tower in the UK. Due to Hackney’s commitment to creating more sustainable buildings, engineered timber technology was the preferred option for the structural elements. CLT wall and floor panels up to 200mm thick and weighing up to four tonnes each, were delivered to the site with all openings pre-cut, allowing them to be lifted straight into position, which was a huge advantage when working on such a restricted site.

Cross laminated timber provides five key benefits – speed, strength, sustainability, safety and cost certainty, all helping to deliver enhanced performance. CLT is the ideal sustainable solutions as it has minimal impact on the environment and delivers exceptional airtightness which maximises energy efficiency.

Speed of construction is achieved by offsite precision engineering for onsite installation. This, in turn, makes project planning less weather dependant, more predictable and therefore reduces programme risk. Rapid large panel construction allows internal works to be carried out earlier, making the critical path operate more smoothly for follow on trades. This improves construction and project delivery time, and offers a faster return on investment.

There will be a full technical case study presentation on Banyan Wharf at this year’s Solid Wood Solutions, taking place at the Inmarsat Conference Centre, London on 16 September and hosting over 250 delegates from around the world. With sustainability and offsite construction high on the construction industry agenda – Solid Wood Solutions is the essential event to hear first-hand from industry leaders and innovators. Wood may be one of the world’s oldest building materials, but it is now also one of the most advanced.

This one day conference and exhibition will showcase the very best in engineered timber by creating a platform for 18 of the industry’s innovators to present some of the most prestigious projects from across the UK and Europe. As engineered timber is one of the fastest growing modern methods of construction, this event is designed to inspire through innovation.

Tickets are just £125 + VAT. Book now to avoid disappointment: http://solidwoodsolutions.co.uk/book

Taking place on 16 September 2015 and the Inmarsat Conference Centre, London. Solid Wood Solutions is a one day conference and exhibition designed to showcase the very best in engineered timber and creating a platform for the industry’s innovators to present some of the most prestigious projects in the UK and in Europe.

Engineered timber is one of the fastest growing modern methods of construction and this event is designed to inspire through innovation. The event will consist of a highly focused exhibition of circa 25-30 companies from within the CLT and glulam technology sector plus complementary solutions such as SIPS and cladding/fenestration solutions with a conference of approximately 200 delegates.

The full speaker programme will be available shortly but here is a list of speakers confirmed so far:

  • Rosi Fieldson, Head of Environment – Simons Group – Chair
  • Michael Green, Director – Michael Green Architecture (INVITED) –presenting “Solid Wood Skyscrapers”
  • Andrew Waugh, Founding Director – Waugh Thistleton Architects – presenting “Timber systems in medium rise housing application”
  • Alex Smith, Associate – Hawkins\Brown, Nick Milestone, Managing Director – B & K Structures & Clive Fussell, Director – Engenuiti – presenting “Banyan Wharf, Hackney –  Building a 10 Storey CLT/Hybrid structure in London”
  • Liam Dewar, Director – Eurban – presenting “More than structure – Design-led solutions in solid timber”
  • Tim Snelson, Associate Director, Arup Associates – presenting Timber in Commercial Offices
  • Andy Boutle , BIM Manager – Kier Construction, Eoin McCooey , Project BIM Manager – Eurban – presenting “BIM 4 CLT & Digital Handover – Case Study; UEA Crome Court Student Residences”
  • Simon Brambles , Architect – 3D Reid – presenting“Case study on the Taplow Retail Park”
  • Kate Edmondson, Architect – Penoyre and Prasad – presenting “Case study on Middle Row Primary School”
  • Kay Hartmann, Technical Director – KLH, Andrew de Silva, Architect – David Miller Architects, Brian Spencer ,Bid Director – Bouygues UK, Gavin White, Director – Ramboll – presenting “Mayfield School project”
  • Rensteph Thompson , Project Manager International – HESS TIMBER – presenting “Leeds waste – to – energy plant”
  • Robert Hairstans, Director of the Wood Studio – Edinburgh Napier University – presenting “Edinburgh Napier Solid Timber Research, Innovation and Commercialisation”
  • Rupert Scott, Marketing and Membership Manager – TRADA – presenting “Making it easier to specify timber: TRADA’s new National Structural Timber Specification”