Discover the finalists for the Best Use of Certified Timber Prize II

Discover two more projects shortlisted for the World Architecture Festival’s Best Use of Certified Timber Prize: An epic music theatre in London and an office building in Sydney that sets new standards in sustainability.

Discover the finalists for the Best Use of Certified Timber Prize II

23 August 2018 Sustainable construction

This week, we highlight two more projects shortlisted for the World Architecture Festival’s Best Use of Certified Timber Prize: A music theatre and recital hall in London, where wood ensures an incomparable acoustic, and a highly sustainable office block in Sydney.

Royal academy of Music Theatre & Recital Hall in London – Ian Ritchie Architects ltd

The Theatre and new Recital Hall project has created two spaces for musical performances and student rehearsals for the Royal Academy of Music.

The interior design of both spaces was inspired by the shape of wooden string instruments, which led the architects to discover the qualities of wood in reflecting sound, warmth and light. The inclined roof planes and the use of cherry wood and European oak in the Recital Hall provides diffusion and blending of sound, and helps to create an immersive experience for the audience and the performers alike.

600 crystals were installed in the walls, the balconies and the ceiling of the Theatre, giving the impression of an exploding chandelier, which rounds off the epic atmosphere of the space.

International House in Sydney – Tzannes

The International House in Sydney provides a modern office space that, due to the warm, natural softwood interiors, fosters health and wellbeing for its users.

The use of prefabricated timber elements reduced the construction time by two months and the waste by 25%, compared to a conventional building. Photovoltaic cells on the roof generate energy while the adjacent harbour cools the building through modern heat exchange technology.

Being the world’s tallest commercial building made fully of timber, the International House sets an example for environmentally sustainable construction and seeks to generate public interest in this new form of commercial buildings.

The Best Use of Certified Timber Prize supported by PEFC

Supported by PEFC, the Best Use of Certified Timber Prize rewards projects that use certified timber in an innovative, sustainable, educational or artistic manner. Although sharing the same main construction material, the buildings differ widely in many aspects, demonstrating the versatility of timber as a construction material.

In total, 40 architects from over 20 countries entered their projects into the prize. The winner will be selected at the World Architecture Festival (WAF) in Amsterdam, on 30 November 2018.

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 restaurants, 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

Photo credits: Ian Ritchie Architects Ltd., Tzannes


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