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The 9 Coolest Wood Buildings Of The Year

Tiiiiimber!

  • <p><a href="http://www.architecturepath.com/portfolio/the-radiator/" target="_blank">The Radiator</a> located in Portland, Oregon, by PATH Architecture was recognized in the Multi-Story Wood Design category.</p>
  • <p><a href="http://www.worksarchitecture.net/projects/framework/" target="_blank">Framework</a> in Portland, Oregon, by Works Partnership Architecture won for Commercial Wood Design.</p>
  • <p>The winner in the Wood in Government Buildings category is <a href="http://www.ultramoderne.net/?p=22" target="_blank">Chicago Horizo</a>n by Ultramoderne.</p>
  • <p><a href="http://architizer.com/projects/our-lady-of-montserrat-chapel/" target="_blank">Our Lady of Montserrat Chapel</a> in Seattle, Washington, by Hennebery Eddy Architects won the Wood in Education Buildings award.</p>
  • <p>The winner of the Beauty of Wood—Innovation award is the <a href="http://link-arc.com/project/china-pavilion/" target="_blank">China Pavilion Milan Expo</a> 2015 by Studio Link-Arc, LLC.</p>
  • <p><a href="http://www.henneberyeddy.com/projects/90" target="_blank">Fire Station 76</a> in Gresham, Oregon, by Hennebery Eddy Architects won an Institutional Wood Design award.</p>
  • <p><a href="http://frameworks.ced.berkeley.edu/2014/lixil-international-university-competition-nest-we-grow/" target="_blank">Nest We Grow</a>; Taiki-cho, Hiro-gun in Hokkaido, Japan, by the University of California, Berkeley, College of Environmental Design was recognized in the Green Building by Nature category.</p>
  • <p><a href="http://hackerarchitects.com/uufco-new-home" target="_blank">Unitarian Universalist Fellowship</a> of Central Oregon; Bend, Oregon, by Hacker won for Green Building by Design.</p>
  • <p>Cottonwood Valley Charter School E-Pod in Socorro, New Mexico, by Environmental Dynamics, Inc. earned a regional recognition award.</p>
  • <p>Olney Branch, Montgomery County Public Libraries in Olney, Maryland, by The Lukmire Partnership, Inc. also earned a regional recognition award.</p>
  • 01 /10

    The Radiator located in Portland, Oregon, by PATH Architecture was recognized in the Multi-Story Wood Design category.

  • 02 /10

    Framework in Portland, Oregon, by Works Partnership Architecture won for Commercial Wood Design.

  • 03 /10

    The winner in the Wood in Government Buildings category is Chicago Horizon by Ultramoderne.

  • 04 /10

    Our Lady of Montserrat Chapel in Seattle, Washington, by Hennebery Eddy Architects won the Wood in Education Buildings award.

  • 05 /10

    The winner of the Beauty of Wood—Innovation award is the China Pavilion Milan Expo 2015 by Studio Link-Arc, LLC.

  • 06 /10

    Fire Station 76 in Gresham, Oregon, by Hennebery Eddy Architects won an Institutional Wood Design award.

  • 07 /10

    Nest We Grow; Taiki-cho, Hiro-gun in Hokkaido, Japan, by the University of California, Berkeley, College of Environmental Design was recognized in the Green Building by Nature category.

  • 08 /10

    Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Central Oregon; Bend, Oregon, by Hacker won for Green Building by Design.

  • 09 /10

    Cottonwood Valley Charter School E-Pod in Socorro, New Mexico, by Environmental Dynamics, Inc. earned a regional recognition award.

  • 10 /10

    Olney Branch, Montgomery County Public Libraries in Olney, Maryland, by The Lukmire Partnership, Inc. also earned a regional recognition award.

Wood-frame construction goes back thousands of years. But as buildings gradually became taller and larger, more robust materials—like steel and concrete—came to dominate modern architecture. While steel and concrete are strong, they also come with a huge carbon footprint. Good news: timber is making a comeback.

Wood has been praised for its environmental creds (if ethically farmed, not tropical hardwoods, of course), better fire resistance and thermal properties compared to steel and concrete, and versatility. A 2011 study from the U.S. Department of Agriculture recommended that wood become the primary material in green buildings and argues that the material "provides substantial environmental benefits, provides incentives for private landowners to maintain forest land, and provides a critical source of jobs in rural America."

Shinkenchiku-sha Co, Ltd./Hsin-Yu Chen

Architects have been experimenting with the material in some high-profile projects in recent years, ranging from a 10-story condo in New York by SHoP to a 34-story skyscraper in Stockholm by C.F. Møller Architects. While these impressive structures are a few years away from completion, the Wood Products Council has named the nine best timber buildings of 2016 that embody adventurous design and engineering.

The projects range in type, scale, and location. With its charred exterior and sculptural interior vaults, Hennebery Eddy Architects's Fire Station 76, located in Oregon, is a gorgeous example. So is China's pavilion for the 2015 Milan Expo, which boasts an undulating roof clad in perforated bamboo shingles.

Tom Harris, Hedrich Blessing

Ultramoderne's pavilion for the Chicago Biennial received recognition for its use of cross-laminated timber roof panels—the largest shippable panels available—and glue-laminated timber columns, which helped the design stay within its $75,000 construction budget. (Never mind that it kind of looks like a shoddy, generic rest stop in person.)

As a whole, the roster of award winners shows just how creative architects can get with the material both from an aesthetic and structural standpoint. Moral of the story? Wood is good. Spy more stand-outs in the slide show above.

[via ArchDaily]

All Images: via Wood Products Council

Slideshow Credits: 01 / Josh Partee Photography & Caitlin Murray; 02 / Joshua Jay Elliot; 03 / Tom Harris, Hedrich Blessing; 04 / Josh Partee Photography/Andrew Pogue; 05 / Sergio Grazia; 06 / Josh Partee; 07 / Shinkenchiku-sha Co, Ltd./Hsin-Yu Chen; 08 / Lara Swimmer Photography; 09 / Patrick Coulie Photography; 10 / Eric Taylor Photography;