Tree Frog Forestry News

The hottest new thing in sustainable building is, uh, wood

By David Roberts
January 15, 2020
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

Architects, builders, and sustainability advocates are all abuzz over a new building material they say could substantially reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the building sector, slash the waste, pollution, and costs associated with construction, and create a more physically, psychologically, and aesthetically healthy built environment. The material is known as, uh, wood. Trees have been used to build structures since prehistory, but especially after disasters like the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, wood came to be seen as unsafe and unstable relative to the two materials that have since become staples of the construction industry worldwide: concrete and steel. However, a new way of using wood has put the material back in the spotlight. The hype is focused on structural timber or, as it’s more popularly known, “mass timber” …Yes, the hottest thing in architecture this century amounts to “wood, but like Legos.”

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