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News - 03.22.24
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Sustainable Practices – Mass Timber White Paper

Dattner Architects’ Sustainable Practice Group (SPG) is a volunteer group that facilitates a positive environmental impact and improves occupant health, equity, and the resilience of the projects we touch through research on energy use, renewable energy, indoor environment and human health, sustainable materials, site ecology, and urban infrastructure. The Materials sub-committee within Dattner Architects’ Sustainable Practice Group has invested several years in an in-depth exploration of Mass Timber, examining key aspects such as harvesting, processing, manufacturing, and life cycle analysis. 

This research is shared publicly through a series of white papers called Sustainable Practices, and our Mass Timber research is our inaugural issue. The goal of the research is not only to understand the sustainability of Mass Timber throughout its life cycle but also to challenge preconceptions surrounding environmentally friendly materials. This report reflects our dedication to critically assessing the notion of material sustainability within our practice and navigating the complexities of incorporating Mass Timber into our projects. 

Mass Timber offers a sustainable alternative to conventional construction materials. Local regulatory limitations are expected to change in coming years as more Mass Timber projects come on line. Rigor and transparency is required when calculating and communicating carbon sequestration data, life cycle impact, and construction advantages. As architects advocate for low-carbon design solutions that account for future adaptability, innovative disassembly strategies, and prolonged material life spans, Mass Timber’s merits deserve continued research.  

Drawing from insights gathered from peers, consultants, and clients, our research enriches our understanding of both the material itself and the practical considerations involved in its implementation. 

View full Report

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