Dalston Works, London is a landmark multi-use project for CLT, showcasing the benefits of lightness this material offers, when building on a site that presents major challenges. The Channel Tunnel rail link runs directly underneath the complex; in the future so too will the second phase of Crossrail. This placed tight constraints on the ground works, and the weight of the overall structure. The world’s largest timber structure in terms of volume of CLT used, this 10-storey carbon-neutral apartment complex is five times lighter than if it had been built in concrete or steel.
While most structures of this kind use a combination of engineered timbers, Dalston Works has exclusively used CLT from first floor upwards. The use of this material means the building will also be carbon negative for the first few years of its use i.e. approximately 50 percent less embodied CO2 than a concrete frame.
The material also makes the structure more energy efficient. Before the CLT panels are transported to site, window and door openings are cut. The panels form the walls and ceilings and can be quickly assembled. The precision-cut panels lend themselves to airtightness, allowing Dalston Works also to perform well in terms of energy-in-use. The building achieved CSH 4, and a BREEAM silver rating for the commercial areas. An excellent example of how CLT can become a preferred material over the conventional ones.
Estimated construction period: Project initiated: November 2017, completion by 2018.
Project lead by: Waugh Thistleton Architects