Mass Timber Construction in the Education Sector is Scoring High Grades

Mass timber construction is increasingly finding its place in midrise residential construction, as well as the commercial and office niche markets. Mass timber construction is also finding its place in other areas, including the educational sector.

Shervin Reyhani, who is the technical manager of the Canadian Wood Council and Wood WORKS! Ontario, recently did a webinar presentation on what can make wood an attractive building material in schools and other buildings in the educational sector. Pointing out that “They (mass timber structures) are prefabricated, energy efficient, eco-friendly, fire resistant, have a small carbon footprint, are economical and they save time in construction.” A key to the sector’s growth is collaboration between designers, owners and mass timber manufacturers, the latter of which can find cost-reductions through fabrication methods that maintain structural integrity and architectural goals, Reyhani told the webinar.

High profile projects in Toronto include a 14-storey academic tower at the University of Toronto’s St. George campus, a 10-storey waterfront campus for George Brown College and the six-story campus for Centennial College in Scarborough. The Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation also selected the material for its new Toronto headquarters now under construction. On a smaller scale, mass timber is catching on in the private school sector, with several Montessori schools turning to timber designs in Toronto and elsewhere in Canada.

Reyhani noted that “Sustainability, effectiveness and efficiency, are reasons the product’s future looks bright.”

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Mass timber projects getting high grades in the educational sector