School transformed using CLT in Australian first

School transformed using CLT in Australian first

June 4, 2019

Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic Primary School in New South Wales has become the first school in Australia to be transformed using Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) and will be discussed at the ‘Timber Offsite Construction’ event.
The three-storey extension to the North Strathfield school is a feat of design and construction collaboration, transforming a 1970s concrete building into a creative and supportive space for student wellbeing. A realisation of the school’s vision, the design includes highly visible CLT walls, stairs and ceilings using feature grade CLT panels.
During the first stage of works, many of the internal walls were demolished and the façade replaced, working to re-invigorate previously small and dark spaces. Stage two works included construction of an additional level and an impressive four storey atrium entry. The atrium connects all learning areas, a new hall, arts space, balconies and rooftop playgrounds. 
Other additions to the school include glulam, CLT walls and a CLT acoustic ceiling flooring system. The exterior of the existing structure and new additions are clad in a highly insulated, custom perforated zinc cladding façade with double glazed, airtight high-performance timber and aluminium windows. 
Knut Menden, Senior Associate, BVN Architects says the project is a model for sustainability through its innovation using engineered timber.  
“Using timber in this type of construction provides many benefits. The process is highly precise, productive and environmentally friendly and in the long-term results in increased energy efficiency for the school,” said Menden. 
“Part of the impetus to use CLT was the wealth of research supporting timber use in learning spaces. Current research suggests an increase in concentration, productivity and decreased stress levels, promoting wellness and better learning outcomes for students.”
Using early contractor involvement (ECI), played a crucial role in the success of the project. 
Key members of the design and construction team will join the 2019 Timber Offsite Construction conference and exhibition project panel, discussing the details of the build on Tuesday 18 June. 
The key project team, includes:
   Architect - Knut Menden, Senior Associate, BVN Architects – shortlisted for the NSW Architecture Awards 2019 
   Engineer - Sulan Mendis, TTW Engineers
   Building Contractor - Joseph Moser, CWC-Timber Engineering & Carpentry
Conference Director Kevin Ezard said the introduction of project panel discussions to this year’s event will offer delegates unprecedented access to engage with industry professionals.
“We’re proud to offer our delegates a first-hand opportunity to engage with experts directly involved in the best timber and mass wood projects in Australia at the moment.” Mr Ezard said. 
Other project panels include:
Engineered wood office buildings for Ballarat GovHub, Ballarat, VIC
Residence in Glulam and CLT at Merrawarp Rd, Ceres, VIC
Vertical office extension of 5 storeys at 276 Flinders Street, Melbourne, VIC 
In addition to the impressive line-up, exhibitors from across the globe will display the latest products and systems for offsite timber construction and mass wood systems.


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