The use of cross-laminated timber has moved further into the mainstream with the completion of a five-storey extension to a commercial office space that was constructed with the material.
The project at 276 Flinders Street used CLT and a lightweight steel grid frame to add approximately 3,300 square metres of commercial office space to the existing building.
This is the latest in a clear trend in Melbourne, with Frame, the premium office tower that will sit above Melbourne Central, also set to receive a CLT and Glu-lam vertical extension.
Multiplex regional director of new business Ross Snowball says developers are turning to the properties they already own to give them more value.
“Given the lack of land available in Melbourne’s CBD, it makes sense developers are looking up to their rooftops to give them more bang for their buck,” says Snowball.
“Innovative construction methods such as CLT lend themselves to these types of projects, because they are up to 80 percent lighter than traditional structures. It is also a more sustainable solution.
“Timber has lower embodied energy and the benefit of carbon storage. From a construction point of view, there is less disruption to the surrounding buildings and roads and a faster building process.”
Multiplex senior design manager Jules Tribuzio adds that architects are promoting this type of architecture and clients are increasingly interested in sustainability.
“There is certainly increased interest in ecologically sustainable architecture. 276 Flinders Street has recently achieved a five-star Green Star rating and building with timber was certainly a part of achieving that,” says Tribuzio.
The project will be a topic of conversation at the upcoming Timber Offsite Construction conference and exhibition with key members of the design and construction team discussing the details of the build on Tuesday 18 June.