CREE Buildings Sustainable Tall Wood Building System Arrives in U.S.

October 31, 2012

CREE LifeCycle Tower system delivers tall commercial green buildings, up to 30 stories with 90 percent fewer CO2 emissions and 50 percent shorter construction time

The Austrian green building firm CREE GmbH has opened its U.S. operations in San Francisco, CREE Buildings.  The company’s innovative timber and concrete hybrid technology enables architects to design stunning tall wood buildings up to 30 stories, that can be erected as quickly as a story a day.  Known as the LifeCycle Tower (LCT) system, CREE’s innovation is a slab and post wood design method that requires up to 50 percent shorter construction time compared to reinforced concrete and steel construction.  The LCT system also requires 39 percent fewer resources, over the life of a building and takes advantage of engineered timber products.

By combining wood and concrete together, the LCT system substantially reduces the amount of concrete used in the building, resulting in a lighter structure, with a smaller foundation and up to 90 percent lower CO2 emissions.  Currently, the firm has two buildings established in Austria, with several North American proposals in the works.  This innovative tall wood design system will be on exhibit at GreenBuild2012 in San Francisco, November 14-15, at booth #1401S.

“San Francisco is a great place for us,” said Michael Zangerl, CEO of CREE Buildings.  “Here we are surrounded by the cleantech and sustainable ecosystems, as well as some of the finest architecture firms in the country.  Tall wood buildings are the future of sustainable urban development.  We are excited to provide cities with this cutting edge design expertise and local timber industries with new markets for their products.”

Wood is the main construction material of the CREE LCT ONE building. Located in Dornbrin, Austria, it features the firm’s innovative LifeCycle Tower system, which reduces both construction time and the C02 emissions common with conventional steel and concrete buildings.

How it works
The CREE LifeCycle Tower is a building system which uses prefabricated components manufactured to an architect’s exact specifications.  The wall facades are made from glue-laminate posts, while the floor slabs are constructed from a hybrid of glue-laminate posts and concrete.  While these components are manufactured off-site, the foundation of a building is laid and the structural elevator shaft core is erected.  This core, made out of either steel and concrete or wood, stiffens the building and provides a frame from which the walls and floors can hang.  The slabs and posts are as