A project in Norway is proving the advancement in plywood technology for construction, earning the name ‘plyscrapers’ as this one reaches 280 feet, while also creating less carbon emissions, and requiring less time to build.
To create this type of plywood, it involves laminating boards of wood together with glue at 90-degree angles before pressing them together under the immense pressure and steam of industrial wood presses.
“This technology has changed the whole face of timber as a construction material,” said Roma Agrawal, the structural engineer who built The Shard in central London, to The Economic Times. “It’s a huge leap forward in terms of strength [paired with] massive advances” [in fire safety.]
We all cutting down trees is bad for the environment, however, there are stages in the life of a tree when they become carbon emitters, rather than carbon trappers. Trees don’t always store carbon, and they don’t always suck up more carbon than they emit. Natural storms can uproot trees, exposing their precious carbon-sequestering roots to decay.
“Trees store carbon, so if you harvest them at the right age when they can’t absorb much more or grow much further, then it’s a better solution to use them as a building material,” says Voll Architecture’s Øystein Elgsaas, part of the team that built the Mjøstårnet tower in Norway.