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Wooden skyscraper

A Danish project is set to become the world’s tallest wooden skyscraper when construction is completed in 2023. So why build so high using wood, and more intriguingly, how?

As the winner of the HSB Stockholm design competition, the project is a collaboration between architects C. F. Møller and DinellJohansson. At 34 stories, the wooden tower is set to be very tall. It will also contain about 11,500 m2 of residential space, spread over 30 stories. Well-placed solar cells on the slanting roof will help power the building.

But the name is a little confusing. Much of the structure is wooden, but steel crosses are used within the structure for additional strength. In addition, the structure’s core is reinforced with concrete.

The building could be seen as a relatively traditional construction, using common materials. But two things make this tower stand out from a materials’ perspective. One is the amount of wood: it is visible everywhere in the drawings. The second is that wood is used on the exterior of the internal construction. This means it is also used as fire-proofing.

According to the architects, the pillars and beams will be constructed using solid and cross-laminated timber (CLT). Ceilings and window frames will also be made from wood. This allows the material to be visible from the outside too.

C.F. Møller considers wood an obvious choice for this innovative tall-building development. The renewable and durable material is relatively lightweight and exceptionally strong for this weight. It also goes some way to providing fire-protection, as the outside of the beams would char, protecting both the wood and the steel inside from the heat.

So this building makes integral use of wood and that helps to make it one of the most sustainable and exciting high-rise projects around.

More information via the architects. Images courtesy of C. F. Møller.