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Martin Tessler

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Could Tall Wood Construction Be the Future of High-Rise Buildings?

Across the globe, tall wood structures have begun transforming the world of skyscrapers and high-rise buildings, ushering in an important shift to an architectural practice that has traditionally been dominated by steel and concrete. Typically defined as wood-constructed buildings over 14 stories or 50 meters high, the past six years have seen over 44 tall wood buildings built or underway around the world. Notable examples include Michael Green Architecture and DLR Group’s T3 and Team V Architectuur’s upcoming 73 meter residential tower HAUT.

UBC Quantum Matter Institute / PUBLIC Architecture + Communication

© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler+ 14

Vancouver, Canada

Sechelt Water Resource Centre / PUBLIC

© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler+ 8

Our Readers Respond: The Cádiz Castle Renovation is, in Fact, Good

When we began these bi-weekly round-ups of readers' comments back in October, we did so with one key aim: to encourage open, democratic debate with a very low barrier for entry - the type of internet-enabled debate that many architecture critics and publications have given up on. This week, we got a taste of just that kind of rational, professional debate as our readers picked apart the popular opinion in the wider media that the renovation of Cádiz Castle was "a perfect example of how not to restore an old castle." Alongside debates on whether architecture is a form of art and what the AIA should be doing about sustainability, read on to see what our readers had to say after the break.

AD Readers Debate: Calatrava's WTC Hub, the AIA's Sustainability Role, and the Render as a Contract

The past two weeks in architecture have provided plenty to talk about in thanks to some big news stories, such as the opening of Santiago Calatrava’s World Trade Center Transportation Hub, and some hotly-debated articles, such as Lance Hosey’s critique of the AIA’s sustainability leadership. As a result, it’s been a busy couple of weeks in our comment section - read on to find out what ArchDaily readers had to say.

When It Comes to Sustainable Design, Architects Still Don't Get It

In the face of global doomsday predictions, sustainability has become one of the most crucial aspects of the 21st century, now playing a huge role in everything from politics to the way you dispose of your trash. Fortunately, most architects understand sustainability implicitly, and have adopted it into their lives and work. Or have they? In this article, originally published on Common Edge as "Why Architects Don't Get It," green building expert Lance Hosey highlights the failures of the architecture community in reaching their stated sustainability goals, and argues for a new conception of architecture in which good design and sustainable design are integrated.

A few years ago, the American Institute of Architects, the self-declared “voice of the architecture profession,” announced that "AIA members will no longer need to complete the sustainable design requirement to fulfill their AIA continuing education." Why? Because “sustainable design practices have become a mainstream design intention.” Hooray! If sustainability is “mainstream” now, and knowledge about it is no longer necessary “to maintain competency” and “to advance and improve the profession”—the purpose of continuing education, according to the AIA—then the profession must have met its environmental goals, and there’s nothing left to improve. Mission accomplished.

If only.

Perkins+Will's CIRS Building Wins RAIC's Green Building Award

Perkins+Will's Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability (CIRS) at the University of British Columbia has been announced as the recipient of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada's 2015 Green Building Award. Granted by the RAIC and Canada Green Building Council, the award celebrates stellar architectural designs adhering to responsiveness to occupants' well-being and environmental responsibility. The CIRS achieved LEED Platinum status and is a regenerative structure, implementing ingenious strategies to sustain net-positive energy, net-zero water, and net-zero carbon in both construction and operation.

Why Tall Wooden Buildings are On the Rise: An Interview with Perkins+Will's Wood Expert

Material Minds, presented by ArchDaily Materials, is our new series of short interviews with architects, designers, scientists, and others who use architectural materials in innovative ways. Enjoy!

Wood. The United States is the largest producer of the natural resource in the world. But yet we rarely see it in commercial, high-rise construction. So we asked a wood expert -- Rebecca Holt at Perkins+Will, an analyst for reThink Wood's recent Tall Wood Survey -- to tell us about its potential benefits.

AD: Why is wood a material architects should use in taller buildings?

There are lots of reasons to consider wood – first it has a lower environmental impact than other traditional choices like concrete and steel. Wood is the only major building material that is made the by sun and is completely renewable.

Ten Buildings Pushing The Boundaries of Wood

Perkins + Will UBC Earth Sciences Building. Image © Martin Tessler
Perkins + Will UBC Earth Sciences Building. Image © Martin Tessler

Wood is the ultimate material - it's renewable, sequesters carbon and more importantly, it's buildable. Nevertheless wood is rarely used in tall, vertical construction. Now reThink wood has come out with their Tall Wood Survey (available in full on their website), which surveyed over 50 wood experts to explore three main areas in which wood is usually questioned: financing, insurance and performance. But beyond discussing the pros and cons of wood, the survey also highlights 10 projects that show how wood products are being used in ways you never thought existed. See all ten innovative projects, after the break.

SFU UniverCity Childcare / HCMA

© Martin Tessler
© Martin Tessler
Burnaby, Canada

© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler+ 14

Earth Sciences Building / Perkins&Will

© Martin Tessler
© Martin Tessler

© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler+ 12

Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability / Perkins&Will

© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler+ 19

  • Architects: Perkins&Will
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  5675
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2011

Sauder School of Business / Acton Ostry Architects

© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler© Martin Tessler+ 20

Vancouver, Canada