A different kind of mass timber is thinner and stronger.
The Black and White Building is a future office structure in London’s Shoreditch neighborhood that started construction this summer under the helm of Waugh Thistleton Architects’ founding director Andrew Waugh. Upon completion in winter 2022, the building is slated to be the tallest engineered timber office building in central London.
While touring the wood construction, Waugh spoke to the Financial Times about the building’s unique scent: “It’ll change every season, depending on temperature and humidity. Every spring, every autumn, you get a little refresher of what the building is made of.”
Waugh is known for his wonderful wood buildings, which are mostly made of cross-laminated timber (CLT), which was invented in Austria in the ’90s and is now used all over the world. The Black and White Building’s structure is made from laminated veneer lumber (LVL), which is truly lovely (LVLy) stuff built up from much thinner layers of wood. The floor decking is CLT.
LVL is used like glulam, the first modern mass timber that was often used for columns and beams. But compared to lumber, it is stronger, straighter, and more uniform, and LVL takes greater stress than glulam.
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