On World Wood Day, a look at Germany's tallest timber tower

SKAIO tower
© Kaden + Lager

Kaden + Lager architects are building SKAIO, ten storeys of hybrid timber construction.

It's a great day to hug a tree, being International Day of Forests and World Wood Day, celebrated on the same day to "to highlight wood as an eco-friendly and renewable biomaterial and to raise awareness on the key role wood plays in a sustainable world through biodiversity and forest conservation." In honour of the day I rooted around to find some wonderful new wood project that we hadn't shown before on TreeHugger.

cladding detail© Kaden + Lager

Over in Heilbronn, Germany, Kaden + Lager architects are building SKAIO, currently the tallest wood building under construction in Germany at ten floors and 34 meters (111 feet). It's officially hybrid construction, with stair and elevator core built of reinforced concrete. It is all then clad in aluminum.

SKAIO tower ground floor© Kaden + Lager

There will be a bakery on the ground floor, and 60 residential units above in the usual German mix of market and subsidized units. It is being built at the entrance to a big garden show in 2019, so they are in a hurry. The marketing pitch:

SKAIO tower terrace© Kaden + Lager

The living concept in the wooden high-rise SKAIO is aimed at people who consistently continue their ecological journey in the field of living and value the idea of ​​healthy living. With its clear architecture, the rooms with visible wood, in which one can feel the "living" building material, a residential model with exemplary character is created. Here you live in a sustainable, nature-connected, healthy living environment with a high standard of living.

Prefab Panels© Zublin

The wood parts are prefabricated by ZÜBLIN Timber's Glulam and Cross-Laminated Timber. They explain some of the benefits:

A major advantage of timber construction is the relatively short time needed for construction, as the timber elements are largely prefabricated and merely require mounting and assembly on site. “We build one floor a week,” says Markus Brandl, project manager at ZÜBLIN Timber. The supports for the new buildings are made of glued laminated timber. For the timber walls and ceilings, ZÜBLIN Timber uses only spruce – mainly from German forests and fully PEFC-certified, the certificate of quality for sustainable forestry. That is an important requirement for additional certification: Stadtsiedlung Heilbronn GmbH is applying for gold certification for SKAIO from the German Sustainable Building Council (DGNB).

View of Community© Kaden + Lager

It took a few minutes to find a nice wood project that we have not shown before on TreeHugger; I suspect that every year it is going to get a whole lot easier as these become standard practice, every year there will be more great design to celebrate on World Wood Day.

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