25 King Street Brisbane – Australia’s Tallest Timber Tower

Once it’s finished, 25 King Street Brisbane – a 45m nine-storey office building – will become the tallest engineered timber building in the whole of Australia.

According to Structural Timber Magazine, it is being constructed with cross-laminated timber floors and walls, as well as glulam structural beams and columns.

Glued laminated timber (or glulam, as it’s more popularly referred to as) is a manufactured timber product that’s made by sticking layers of solid boards together with long-lasting and moisture-resistant structural adhesives.

It can be used for a huge number of different purposes, from big structures to joinery timber, and it can be used as horizontal beams or vertical columns. Because this kind of timber is so very adaptable, it can be used for curved or arched shapes as well as different cross sections. Not only that but it can also be used as an alternative to concrete or steel for roofs buildings like supermarkets, sports halls and swimming pools.

The Brisbane building is also going to have the biggest gross floor area in an office building of this kind anywhere in the world… although this is likely to change in the near future since global competition where these buildings are concerned is now strong as the technology becomes better understood.

Dale Connor, Lendlease building chief executive, was quoted by the news source as saying: “25 King is setting a new benchmark within Australia and internationally for the delivery of office buildings that are more sustainable from an environmental perspective while also delivering cost, time and waste efficiencies. Compared to a traditional concrete and steel construction, the preformed engineered timber construction means no waste and an energy saving of at least 40 per cent.”

It’s certainly interesting to see just how well timber is suited to skyscraper construction, as well as other buildings. Earlier this year, Japanese timber company Sumitomo Forestry announced plans to build the tallest wooden building in Tokyo, a 350m skyscraper that would also be the country’s tallest building to boot.

It would be called W350 (to celebrate the 350th anniversary of the company in 2041) and with 70 storeys would be nearly four times higher than the tallest timber building currently, the Brock Commons Student Residence in Vancouver, which is 18 storeys up.

According to Dezeen, reporting back in February, timber is going to make up 90 per cent of the hybrid building, with an impressive 185,000 cubic metres of wood set to be used in the construction of it.

A braced tube structure will be used, with beams and columns manufactured from timber and steel, with diagonal steel braces also used for further support. Once finished, the tower will include offices, shops, residential units and a hotel, with the shops featuring large balconies covered in plants.

A statement from the company said that the aim is to create cities that are environmentally friendly and which use lots of timber so they can be seen as forests through “increased use of wooden architecture”.

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