Timber framing in construction has been around for a long time. Expert construction engineers have long understood the value of timber framing when it comes to strengthening buildings. The reality however is that despite this chequered history, the use of timber in commercial wood framing is evolving with the times. In the last couple of years, this particular sector has been affected by climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the slump in global construction. However, the industry is slowly evolving to meet these challenges and this evolution sets the road map for the trends that we are going to talk about today.
Here is everything you need to know about trends in commercial timber framing.
Adjusting to Climate Change
In the last decade or so, there has been a growing emphasis on the need to use materials that help protect the environment. In particular, materials that require processing before they can be used are being discouraged as they contribute to the overall increase in greenhouse gases. The good news for wood framing is that timber is increasingly being recognized as a sustainable way to go in the construction industry. Wood products do not require extensive processing and tend to retain their carbon content for a long time. The other advantage of timber products is that they can be tracked. This makes their production and harvesting easier to regulate. More so with the increasing adoption of a certification system that ensures that construction companies can easily trace the sources of their timber.
Still, in keeping with the low carbon theme, you should expect to see more buildings using low carbon designs as a way of protecting the environment. In the last couple of years, the industry has seen construction approaches such as Catalyst, which aspire to construct zero-carbon buildings. Such approaches focus not just on the materials used but factors such as energy sharing, architectural elements when it comes to natural lighting, and so on.
Not only is this trend unlikely to change but it is likely to become more pronounced. Expect timber to play a larger role in this process as well.
Another trend that you are likely to see is prefabrication. This is a process where construction materials are prepared off-site and simply assembled on site. This model can be taken further so that the unit is assembled offsite and simply installed on site. The advantages of this approach are numerous. Buildings are made faster and with greater precision as the engineers are not hindered by topographical and weather elements. Mass production of the composite parts also means that houses can be built for less. The fact that timber offers light yet strong building materials places it favorably as the material of choice when using prefabrication construction methods. The fact that wood is so aesthetically pleasing also means that it is unlikely to be replaced as the favorite choice of many homeowners.