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Jim Heverin on sustainability and the use of timber in construction

Jim Heverin, Director at Zaha Hadid Architects speaking with the ‘Changing Construction’ podcast on the sustainability of timber in construction and the all wooden stadium designed for Forest Green Rovers.

When completed, Ecopark Stadium will become the new home of Forest Green Rovers Football Club with important new facilities for its local community.

With the team’s community and supporters at its core, fans will be as close as five meters from the pitch. The stadium’s continuous spectator bowl will maximise matchday atmosphere and incorporates the club’s future growth.

Establishing a holistic vision for the site, Ecopark Stadium will embody low carbon construction methods and operational processes and will be the first all wood football stadium - with almost every element made of sustainably sourced timber. As a building material, laminated timber is highly durable, safe and recyclable.

The Architects’ Journal recently published an opinion piece by Jim Heverin on the fire safety using timber in a stadium.

“Fire safety was ingrained in our design consideration in 2016 when we proposed an all-timber stadium to the football club. The use of timber could achieve the client’s ambitious brief to have a low-carbon stadium while being safe.”

“At Forest Green, cross-laminated timber planks will be used to create sealed terraces which, combined with glulam beams and columns, create the columns and raker beams for the bowl (like conventional structural materials such as concrete or steel in other grounds). Engineered timber, […] is the product of much innovation and testing. It can be produced specifically to meet the safety requirements of its application.”

“If we are to have any chance of converting our industry and its output into a low-carbon one in the coming decade, timber needs to become a part of the solution.

Changing Construction podcast with Jim Heverin

Architects’ Journal - Zaha Hadid Architects: ‘Why our all-wood Forest Green stadium won’t be a fire risk