First All CLT Building Rises in New York (video)
Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) construction, an economically and environmentally conscious alternative to steel and concrete construction, is being introduced in the first full CLT building in New York State by New Energy Works Timberframers. Known throughout the industry as innovators and a people and planet focused company, New Energy Works broke ground for the foundation of their CLT building last week.
“We’re extremely excited to bring this alternative building method to New York State. We see CLTs as the wave of the future and are investing in our Western New York campus to better position the region and our industry to ride the wave,” states Jonathan Orpin, New Energy Works Founder and President. “The opportunities with CLTs are abundant for businesses and housing and offer dramatic environmental benefits. Wood is a naturally occurring and renewable resource which stores carbon. It has proved time and again to perform as well, and at times better than, carbon heavy steel and concrete.”
CLTs are large wooden panels, typically consisting of 3, 5, or 7 layers of dimensional lumber, oriented at right angles, glued together. This results in exceptional strength, dimensional stability, and rigidity. The pre-fabricated wall, floor, and roof panels can be installed quickly with little job-site waste. European countries have been utilizing the panels for multi-story buildings with great structural, financial, and environmental success.
“The CLT panels are pre-designed, highly engineered, of superior quality with precise tolerances – all specific processes and requirements that are fundamental to our timber framing craft. This fits perfectly with our traditional work and parallels the SIPs integration that we’ve spearheaded for years,” explains Orpin.
In February of 2014, New Energy Works’ fine woodworking division, NEWwoodworks located in Shortsville, NY, suffered a catastrophic event as half of the roof collapsed over their 70-year-old building (no one was injured). The CLT project will be a 21,000 sq ft, single level building, an expansion to New Energy Works' main campus, to house both NEWwoodworks and provide storage for Pioneer Millworks (sister company to New Energy Works) reclaimed wood products.
“We could have re-built in Shortsville, Farmington, or Oregon (where there is lots of skilled labor), but largely because of the IDA’s Industrial Development Agency support and our commitment to Western New York we choose to use the opportunity to consolidate our groups into one campus location in Farmington. We anticipate this will make communication easier and allow us to better serve our clients,” continued Orpin.
The new building will stand alone at New Energy Works and Pioneer Millworks Farmington NY headquarters. NEWwoodworks’ manufacturing equipment and craftsmen will be entrusted with 13,000 sq ft while Pioneer Millworks will utilize 8,000 sq ft for reclaimed wood storage and shipping. Groundbreaking for the foundation just began on November 15, 2016 behind the company’s timber frame shop.
Combining the strength of timbers and CLT panels, the building will utilize a timber frame wrapped by CLT walls and topped by CLT roof panels. The panels will be pre-cut for windows and doors and will arrive by cargo shipment to Farmington NY in early January 2017. Both the timber frame and the panels will be raised in January 2017.
New Energy Works designs and builds environmentally responsible timber frames across the USA from their New York and Oregon facilities. The company offers Timber Framing (design, engineering, manufacturing, build), Enclosure Systems, Fine Woodworking, Recycled and Sustainable wood products. New Energy Works has LEED AP staff members, is a member of the US Green Building Council, and is FSC Certified.