A winner of the 2019 American Institute of Architects (AIA) Award for Regional and Urban Design, the $74-million Pike Place MarketFront addition to the landmark market in Seattle, Washington, represents a critical link between the historical district and several future developments along the waterfront.
Mass timber buildings are capable of providing a level of fire-resistance comparable to steel and concrete. Building code changes are allowing more projects to capitalize on the cost, schedule, and environmental advantages of wood construction. As the popularity of wood grows, construction safety practices are also receiving greater emphasis to mitigate fire hazards during one of the most vulnerable periods of a building’s lifetime.
Advocates for mass timber construction boast of faster construction times, lower labor costs, and environmental benefits. However, some building professionals are skeptical. The design firm Hickok Cole has designed Timber Towers, a conceptual 60-story mass timber skyscraper, to showcase what is possible with wood.
Workplaces are now tasked with inspiring creativity, recruiting talent, promoting mental well-being, and even encouraging employee productivity. It is a big ask for workplace designers, but materials like wood are helping them answer it.
Prior to the mid-20th century, building walls relied on their thickness and density to resist water penetration. Moisture would mainly deflect from the wall face or be absorbed and later evaporate from the mass wall.