The first CLT solutions were used in the construction of single-family houses. Now, the use of CLT has moved increasingly towards urban construction – high-rise buildings, towers, bridges. Since 2012, we have also been producing prefabricated CLT housing modules at its Hartola and Pälkäne units in Finland, offering a safe and rapid solution for urban construction.
CLT’s properties make it highly suitable for multi-storey construction. CLT elements’ vacuum characteristics lead to a stable and durable end product; no swelling or shrinkage occurs during its entire life cycle. This makes CLT an especially safe choice for building in earthquake zones. In addition, the prefabricated elements minimise the time needed for assembly at the site offering a cost-competitive solution for the customer; the elements of a single-family house, for example, fit on one truck, and the house can be erected in a day.
But what about the fire resistance of wood constructions? The fire resistance of a wooden construcion is actually much higher than that of a steel construction. Steel quickly loses capacity when heated. A wooden construction could char on the surface with a speed that can be predicted but its structures would remain intact. “The 20th century was definitely the era of concrete and steel,” ponders Gernot Weiss, Head of Central and East European Region, Building Solutions. “As people are getting more and more familiar with the principles of sustainable construction, I’m absolutely convinced that the 21st century will be the era of renewable materials. And when we speak of renewable materials, it is definitely cross-laminated timber that first comes to my mind.”
Video on CLT in use in London, UK (Bridport house)
How CLT was used in 8-storey high residential building in the heart of London.