June was a busy month for OZ Senior Associate Joe Anastasi. As our in-house mass timber expert, Joe gave an AIA-accredited presentation on the mass timber movement at this year’s AIA Architecture Conference and the Colorado Wood Design Symposium put on by WoodWorks Wood Product Council. With several projects either completed (The Loading Dock, Viega), in design or in construction (PlatteFifteen), OZ Architecture has become a national leader in the mass timber movement.
Joe has become an expert in the overall benefits and lessons learned of designing with this unique material. Mass timber, particularly cross-laminated timber (CLT), offers several sustainable aspects as well as design flexibility. The result is an authentic and warm environment with a positive user experience and workplace.
Mass timber products can be sustainably harvested (if sourced locally from a sustainably managed forest) as a renewable resource with a less impactful carbon footprint than steel. Wood’s low-embodied energy and ability to store carbon are critical sustainable aspects the team considers in pursuing this construction type. In addition, the fabrication process utilizes smaller wood members efficiently and creates less waste overall. Lighter members are easily maneuvered on site and are installed very quickly.
Another benefit of mass timber is the design flexibility. This allows architects and designers multiple structural possibilities through an integrated design approach. These dimensional stable wood panels perform well thermally, acoustically, and large mass panels are very safe; they retain their structural integrity in the event of a fire. The team has utilized CLT for floors, roofs, shafts, balconies, stairs, furniture, etc. By collaborating with each engineering and fabrication discipline early, innovative and efficient design solutions can be realized.
Bringing in this natural material into the modern workplace helps reduce stress, increase productivity, and adds to an overall positive experience in the workplace. Anastasi has experienced the benefits of this firsthand noting, “Tenants of our CLT projects truly enjoy their work environment and are decidedly a fan of the mass-timber look and feel which develops a more positive and thoughtful workplace.”
Joe’s presentation walked through mass timber benefits, things to consider, the firm’s extensive expertise and analysis through several of OZ’s mass timber projects and studies. Want to learn more? Reach out to us here at OZ for a download of the presentation.