Metsä Wood’s Hybrid City initiative is seeking ways to make construction more sustainable, while maintaining efficiency using current building methods, as explained in this article…
Improving sustainability is imperative according to Metsä Wood, with the company saying the transition will only happen if construction companies can maintain efficiency, adding the world needs a Plan B.
Conventionally used materials such as concrete and steel dominate the construction industry, and construction alone uses half the world’s resources and causes 30% of all carbon dioxide emissions.
Responsible construction companies are feeling the pressure to meet the growing demand for more sustainable building. The answer to this need, without compromising efficiency, lies in hybrid construction: modular construction that combines wood and other construction materials in a practical way.
Mikko Saavalainen, SVP, Business Development at Metsä Wood, commented: “The challenge of improving sustainability in construction has been that construction companies have been asked to change both materials and building methods at the same time. The results aren’t great.
“Instead, we need to find ways to help them in the transition by developing sustainable building elements that fit current ways of building. Hybrid is the solution.”
All construction materials have their benefits, but wood is the only material that stores carbon. Architect Tao Gopfers – famous for the design of Sydney’s Sirius building – points out that more sustainable building can be achieved by replacing non-renewable materials with engineered wood like Kerto® LVL (laminated veneer lumber).
Tao commented: “In many cases, as much as 25% of these materials could easily be replaced with Kerto LVL. The end result would be beautiful as well as more sustainable, because wood is an effective and aesthetic material.
“I believe wood elements will be an essential part of tomorrow’s better cities – hybrid cities.”
Metsä Wood is appealing to building engineers and construction companies to join an initiative to discover the world’s best solutions for more efficient, sustainable, modular and practical building methods.
The Hybrid City challenge can be accessed through the Open Source Wood platform. Participants should select an existing multi-storey building made of non-wooden materials, choose an element used in the building and redesign it using Kerto LVL as the main material.
The closing date for entries is the 31st May, and the winners will be selected by a group of experts within the Open Source Wood community.
The top prize for the most innovative solution is €10,000. Second and third places will be awarded €5,000 each.
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