Legacy on Park Avenue is a new complex that’s making use of cross-laminated timber technology. (Artwork provided)

Langley condo showcases specialty laminated wood

The luxury condo development will be the first buiding in Canada to use a laminated wood firewall.

A new condo being built in Langley City will be the nation’s first use of a laminated wood technology that allows for unique appearance and faster construction.

And Legacy on Park Avenue is the first time cross-laminated timber (CLT) has been used for a firewall in Canada.

The development on 204th Street and Park Avenue near Douglas Park is a six-storey residential development featuring two- and three-bedroom condominiums. Construction at Legacy is well underway with its completion slated for July 2020.

The project combines advanced construction systems with CLT panels to create a curvy structure unlike anything seen in the region.

Built by MDM Construction, the project showcases an extremely unique architectural design made possible by the CLT panels used in its construction. The project’s curved “flying” balconies were a key element of the design that could only be brought to fruition with the use of CLT panels.

“The speed, fit, and finish of the CLT panels cannot be matched in conventional framing,” explained Steve Rempel, a partner in MDM. “The materials’ ability to span in two directions at the same time have opened up new structural framing possibilities, allowing us to bring projects like Legacy to life.”

Beyond appearance and the construction opportunities the panels open up, the prefabricated engineered wood panels are a sustainable alternative to traditional materials like concrete, he added. The building material supports the environment, reducing the carbon footprint of the structure. In addition to the seismic resilience and positive environmental impact, the CLT panels work to reduce the transfer of heat and noise by approximately 35 per cent the rate of a concrete system, Rempel said.

The canopy at the new Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre are constructed from a type of laminated wood, and cross-laminated timber products are becoming more common in residential and commercial construction but Legacy is the first example of the product being used for a firewall.

This week B.C. Premier John Horgan announced changes to the B.C. Building Code that would allow construction of buildings up to 12 storeys using wood. The current limit is six storeys. Canada’s national building code will be changing next year to allow for 12 storey structures. The International Code Council is recommending buildings up to 18 storeys by 2021 and a 21-storey structure has been approved for Milwaukee, Wisc. The changes in building codes were possible with the advent of laminated wood technology.

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