Wood that wows: Church in Romania buttressed in giant glulam arches

Before we start:

Glulam is short for glue-laminated timber, built up from small pieces of wood finger-jointed together and laminated with all the pieces going in the same direction, unlike cross-laminated timber, where plies go in alternating directions. It's usually used for structural elements.

Discalced Carmelites are a Christian order going back to 1593 who apparently don't wear shoes. (from dis- (expressing removal) + calceatus (from calceus ‘shoe’).

Discacled carmelites hall© Viorel Plesca via Archdaily

Architect Tudor Radulescu has built a church in Romania for the Order of Discalced Carmelites, described as a "contemplative monk order known for its austerity." They wanted an austere church without a lot of ornamentation, and indeed the structure itself is ornamental.

ceiling detail in church© Viorel Plesca via Archdaily

It is hard to understand the translations in ArchDaily, but I like this paragraph describing the use of new tech to build a traditional space:

In an age of new technologies, of conversions in the build environment in particular, in an age of birth of new programs, of breakthroughs towards a tomorrow’s world, there is a project theme in which the modern alternative gives way to the traditional, where the function satisfies the old and ancient requirements.

brace on wall © Viorel Plesca via Archdaily

The Glulam is made by Moretti Interholz, an Italian company that also waxes poetic:

Glued laminated timber is a live, dynamic, natural material. It can adapt itself to demanding tasks, while keeping on showing its beauty. A material which conquered our heart, which has always accompanied us. And will always do.

Indeed. More images in Archdaily

Tags: Wood Construction


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