Landscape Architect & Specifier News

APR 2018

LASN is a photographically oriented, professional journal featuring topics of concern and state-of-the-art projects designed or influenced by registered Landscape Architects.

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90 Landscape Architect and Specifier News I n f o r m a t i o n R e q u e s t # 6 0 2 Portland-based LEVER Architecture has designed a 12-story building for Portland's Pearl District that should be complete in 2019. It's asserted that it will be the "tallest human-occupied all-wooden structure" in the U.S. There is an 18-story wood building (Brock Commons student residences) at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. Meanwhile, Michael Green Architecture has designed this proposed 35-story timber tower in Paris. RENDERING COURTESY OF MICHAEL GREEN ARCHITECTURE Renaissance in Timber Buildings While our recent ancestors constructed buildings out of wood (think the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 that destroyed thousands of buildings), architects long ago shifted to steal and glass for taller buildings. U.S. building codes generally bar wooden structures more than 85 feet tall. However, there is now emerging a small renaissance in timber buildings. Washington State Governor Jay Inslee recently signed legislation (state bill 5450) that directs the state's building code council to "adopt rules for the use of mass timber products for residential and commercial building construction." The law will allow state and local jurisdictions to begin to work mass timber construction into local building and zoning codes. Multistory wood buildings have recently been built in Sweden, Finland, the U.K., and a 24-story wooden building under way in Vienna. To provide uniform requirements for these buildings, the International Code Council (ICC), publisher of the International Building Code (IBC), established an ad hoc committee in 2016 to develop "comprehensive design and construction criteria to be proposed for the 2021 edition of the IBC." Two series of full-scale fire tests, one conducted by the NFPA Research Foundation and one conducted by the American Wood Council (AWC), are said to have contributed valuable information to the work of the committee. As explained in an article in The Atlantic ( the new high-rise timber buildings use "a high-tech wood product known as mass timber," a framework of glue-laminated timber bonded into massive beams and columns. Walls and floors use cross-laminated-timber panels, i.e., layers of wood are stacked in alternating directions. Contractor Sentenced to Prison for Doing Business As a Landscape Architect The Gloucester Times reports a Salem Superior Court judge has sentence a contractor to at least a minimum of 5 ½ years in prison for representing himself as a landscape architect. He's also required to pay restitution of $633,138 to 18 client victims in Massachusetts. According to the report, the man's website, "Allure Landscape Architecture," had project images taken from websites of design firms, and even listing associates on his site who worked for other firms. Allegedly most of the project work was paid upfront by residential clients, but never completed.

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