Best Use of Certified Timber Prize: a unique modular office building and a timber bridge inspired by nature
8 November 2022 Sustainable construction
Only three more weeks before PEFC and the World Architecture Festival award the Best Use of Certified Timber Prize.
Let’s discover two more finalists: an office building that uses a revolutionary timber hybrid construction system, and a wooden bridge that pays tribute to the area’s traditional construction techniques.
EDGE Suedkreuz Berlin – TCHOBAN VOSS Architekten
EDGE Suedkreuz is one of the largest modular timber hybrid buildings in Germany, comprising two six-floor office buildings.
Wood plays a key role in the building, which took inspiration from the forest and nature. In many of the structural elements, such as columns, beams, windows, doors and railings, wood is prominently visible, bringing a natural feeling into the space. Floor-to-ceiling windows mean the wooden interior is visible from outside. In the atrium, four mushroom-shaped forms of different heights, the tallest reaching almost 15 meters, catch the visitors’ eye.
The aim was to keep the building’s carbon footprint low, use sustainable materials, and provide a healthy indoor climate.
Creating a modular timber-concrete-hybrid structure using the CREE construction system saved up to 80% of CO2 per square metre of floor area. Low construction weight, shorter construction times, and long-term durability are other advantages of this construction method. It also means that dismantling the building will be as easy and efficient as construction.
Timber Bridge in Gulou Waterfront – LUO studio
The eye-catching 25-metre-long timber bridge is located in Gulou Waterfront Resort in Jiangmen, China. The unusual landscape, formed of a network of waterways and ponds, once provided an infrastructure for fishing and farming.
The bridge connects the local cultural heritage with rural development, as part of an eco-cultural tourist resort for nature education, fishing and farming activities.
Hundreds of PEFC-certified wooden elements are bolted together to form the bridge, paying tribute to the traditional construction techniques employed in the rural villages of southern China.
Located between a densely populated business street and a children’s play area, the bridge marks the shift from the “practical” commercial street area to the “dreamy” children’s playground.
The design of the bridge aims to make this transition a special experience. When crossing the bridge, pedestrians can see the elaborate wooden architecture and structural joinery, and the moving water under the bridge. Gaps in the roof create walls of sunlight, making this construction stand out from other open bridges.
The Best Use of Certified Timber Prize, supported by PEFC
The World Architecture Festival and PEFC are awarding the Best Use of Certified Timber Prize for the fourth time, recognising architects for using certified timber for buildings outstanding in sustainability, innovation, quality or aesthetics.
The Festival will take place as a hybrid event from 30 November until 2 December in Lisbon, Portugal.
Designing the future with sustainable timber
Across the world, the architecture community is embracing solid and engineered wood to deliver high-profile, award-winning projects and everyday designs - from houses, schools and hotels to offices, theatres, supermarkets, and swimming pools.
Under the theme Designing the Future with Sustainable Timber, a range of stakeholders have come together under the leadership of PEFC to promote the use of wood in construction in general and certified wood in particular. Join us! Contact us at email@example.com
Photo credits: Weiqi Jin, Ilya Ivanov