They’re the timber equivalent of the Oscars, and this year our exceptional new Pavilion at International Quarter London picked up two very special gongs. The Structural Timber Awards celebrates the achievements of teams using the most natural and sustainable construction materials, and the Pavilion, our stunning and sustainable landmark, was recognised for its innovation and sustainability.
What awards did the Pavilion win?
Arup picked up Engineer of the Year award for their innovative work with timber on the building; and then the Pavilion walked away with the trophy of the night when crowned Winner of Winners by the STA judges.
Earlier this year, the Pavilion was also awarded BREEAM outstanding status, which puts its sustainable performance in the top one per cent of new commercial buildings in the UK.
But why is the Pavilion so important for the construction industry?
While the Pavilion is a showstopper for Stratford, it will also have a large impact on the wider construction industry. The building successfully demonstrates how timber could be used to help the UK construction industry achieve its carbon reduction targets.
The use of timber in the Pavilion’s construction resulted in a 56% reduction in embodied carbon when compared to an efficient concrete alternative.
And, in fact, the carbon stored in the superstructure frame is more than the total embodied carbon of the structure. This puts the Pavilion in line with the RIBA 2030 targets for embodied carbon.
The building also achieved an EPC A rating, demonstrating an impressively low energy consumption by making use of the district’s heating and cooling network.
Was it a conscious decision to use timber?
Yes, both for sustainable and practical reasons.
At Lendlease we are aiming to reach absolute zero carbon by 2040. This means we must transform the way we build and the materials we build with. Timber absorbs carbon as it grows, and the material stores it for long periods of time. In some cases, substituting a tonne of steel or concrete with a tonne of timber can save 1.5 tonnes of carbon.
The use of timber in the Pavilion was also practical. The building sits over the Woolwich Line tunnels, so the structure had to be light. We also specified using timber as part of the original brief for the architectural competition.