Recap: Mass Timbers Structures

August 17, 2017 by Forrest Bratton

BIG RED DOG hosted Mass Timber Structures, an afternoon seminar spotlighting the opportunities for using mass timber (aka big pieces of wood) in building design. These materials include cross-laminated timber (CLT), nail-laminated timber (NLT) dowel-laminated timber (DLT), as well as more traditional heavy timber elements such as glue-laminated timber (glulam). Also addressed were unique architectural and engineering design challenges related to these products, the state of the art of prefabricated and modular construction, and a real life case study of an urban infill project using a hybrid system of mass timber and stick framing. The expert panel of presenters included Sherry Mundell, P.E., South Central Regional Director for WoodWorks; Forrest Bratton, P.E., SECB, Structural Team Leader at BIG RED DOG; Uli Dangel, Assistant Professor at UT Austin; and Ted Panton, Principal and Design Director at GGLO.
The event was attended by a distinguished group of over 30 architects, educators, and developers, who contributed to the discussion with insightful questions and comments for each presenter. While mass timber construction is not a new concept, especially in Europe where CLT has been around for two decades, it is just beginning to gain traction in the United States as an alternative to steel or concrete. For many building types, mass timber can potentially provide advantages over traditional materials in terms of economy, speed of construction, sustainability, and beauty. The Mass Timber Structures event provided a forum for AEC professionals learn more about mass timber and to network with like-minded peers in discussing how it could make an impact in the Texas market. The formal seminar ran from 2:30 to 5:00pm, after which many stayed to continue the conversation in the BRD kitchen over drinks and hors d’oeuvres. We hope you will join us for our next event!

We can give you the 411 on CLT, NLT and DLT. Contact BIG RED DOG Engineering | Consulting about your next structural engineering project to see how we can help you to make your project a great success!

Written by Forrest Bratton

Forrest Bratton

Forrest received his Bachelor of Science – Architectural Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin. He has led the design and project delivery for a wide variety of structures and campuses, including theaters, schools, churches, assembly halls, mixed-use and podium structures, and mid-rise multi-family residences, guiding them successfully from early schematic design through construction. His technical expertise extends to all the major structural materials including structural steel, reinforced concrete, post-tensioned concrete, masonry, and timber. When Forrest is not at work, he enjoys spending time with his wife and two young sons and riding his bike around Austin.