Lever Architecture’s founder, Thomas Robinson is revolutionizing the way developers build some of today’s tallest and most influential buildings. A pioneer in his industry, Robinson has been able to design and develop structures using only wood, no concrete or steel is needed to help bear the weight of the infrastructure. Not only is this method allowing a more affordable way for construction, but is also benefiting the environment in which they are built in.
Taking an old method of building and applying a new spin on the process, has allowed Robinson and his team to create and develop a number of buildings using their high-tech wood product called mass timber. Unlike your regular two-by-four planks of wood, mass timber is much safer in that it doesn’t easily ignite. The joined beam, column, and CLT of mass timer are placed in a furnace and then weighed down with over 25,000 pounds. Doing this allows Robinson and his team to determine how strong the wood will be once exposed to high temperatures in a fire. After a few hours of exposure to heat and excessive weight, the planks emerged charred but are still intact.
What many developers and investors are hesitant about is the safety of these structures being that wood is highly flammable and unlike concrete and steel isn’t as sturdy, but Robinson and his team have been able to develop this material so that it can rock back and forth like seismic waves in case an earthquake is to occur.
Building structures using wooden frames not only is is not only affordable due to the natural materials being used but again it is also eco-friendly. By using wood, Lever has been able to create structures that “carbon sinks,” absorbing and holding on to carbon until they decompose or burn. A study conducted by the Journal of Sustainable Forestry found that “substituting wood for out for other material used in buildings and bridges could prevent 14 to 31 percent of global carbon emissions.” Helping cut back on the 10 percent of greenhouse-gas emissions from the manufacturing of concrete used to help build most buildings.
To learn more about Lever’s eco-friendly wooden skyscrapers, visit Citylab.com