Notes and Notices

On art, architecture and design

10/10/2016

Living trees as buildings

Posted by Carren Jao Pineda |

It's not only glass and steel that can become buildings, so can trees. When I talked to Vancouver architect Michael Green a few years ago, he was getting ready to break ground on North America's tallest wood building. He says that because of the size of trees required to make these buildings, they are actually quite fireproof.

But, trees are natural building materials, even when we don't cut them down. There are people in the world that make bridges out of them. Now, Barry Cox of New Zealand has made a church by training semi-mature trees around an iron frame.

Cox, owner of a tree moving service, used his knowledge to grow a church. The enterprising tree-lover says that he used live cut-leaf alder trees for the roof canopy and copper sheen for the walls, as well as camellia black tie, Norway maple, and pyramidal white cedar.

What if we stop looking at trees as a resource only when cut down? What else could they be?

Here's a video of the Tree Church:


h/t ASLA

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