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Eco-Friendly Construction in Utah as First Large-Scale Mass-Timber Building Takes Shape


Leah Hogsten | The Salt Lake Tribune

An office building under construction in Draper, Utah is the State's first experience with large-scale, mass-timber construction, and may be just the beginning. The Baltic Pointe building, a five-story structure overlooking I-15, will be home to Pelion Venture Partners and HB Workplaces, and is set to open early next year.


According to Liza Hart, Vice President of Design and Sustainability at the Gardner Group, the developer and part owner of the building, the use of wood as a building material is an old method that is being revived due to concerns surrounding climate change. “It’s an old way of building made new again, but there’s really nothing new about it,” said Hart.


Steel and concrete, commonly used in office construction, are among the most carbon-intensive materials to produce. And they require substantial amounts of heat typically generated through burning fossil fuels.


In contrast, wood removes greenhouse gases from the atmosphere during its growth period and can be cross-laminated to produce strong structural materials that can support buildings up to 25 stories tall. The cross beams in Baltic Pointe are particularly thick, up to 32 inches, and are created using processes that generate less carbon dioxide than their steel and concrete equivalents.



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