Cross Laminated Timber and the Civic Precinct

Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) is a sustainable and innovative timber construction alternative to steel and concrete.

A well-established material used throughout Europe, CLT is growing in popularity in large scale construction projects in Australia.

The use of CLT in our new office is an innovative and sustainable design response, which exemplifies Geelong’s designation as a UNESCO City of Design.

CLT is made by gluing saw-cut timber together with non-toxic adhesive to form multiple layers with boards laid in opposite directions to increase strength.

The final product can be used to span two directions and is manufactured to the highest levels of accuracy using the latest technology. It is manufactured in a factory-controlled environment and cut to specific sizes and shapes ready to be assembled onsite.

CLT has been used in a range of medium and high-rise projects across Australia, with buildings up to 10 stories constructed out of CLT.

There are a number of excellent attributes which make CLT the best choice for the construction of our new office: 

  • Sustainability: CLT is a sustainable alternative to traditional construction materials. Sourced from sustainably managed sources, timber stores CO2, creating a lower embodied carbon footprint than using concrete and steel. As the timber is prefabricated, it also significantly reduces waste onsite through the construction process, and allows for quicker construction time frames, meaning less time on site.
  • Performance: CLT performs well when compared to concrete and steel. The cross-lamination process means that beams and structural elements are strong and safe, while being significantly lighter. CLT also has similar acoustic performance to other construction methods and performs well thermally. It also has a long lifespan with low maintenance requirements, meaning that well designed and manufactured buildings will last long into the future.
  • Fire safety: Contrary to what you might expect, CLT has excellent fire resistance. Timber has good thermal insulation properties and when it burns, a layer of char is created that helps to protect and maintain the strength and structural integrity of the wood inside. CLT can often be used in unprotected situations where non-combustible materials such as steel would require special fire protection. Fire resistant linings will improve the already excellent fire resistance of CLT.
  • Manufacturing: CLT in our new City office will be locally manufactured in Avalon and sourced from sustainable timber sources. This will act as a catalyst for this advanced manufacturing industry in the region and create jobs.
  • Amenity: There are significant advantages to working and spending time within a timber building. Timber is visually appealing, creating a warm, living atmosphere far removed from a typical, sterile office environment. This, as well as lots of natural light, greenery and access to outdoor spaces, will make the Civic Precinct a great place to work and visit.

Page last updated: Wednesday, 6 November 2019