Engineering a Wood Revolution

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Wood seems poised for a resurgence in structural applications, but is its popularity a flash in the pan or a whole new way of building?

Where available, wood was the primary building material for most residential and commercial structures in North America prior to the 1900s. It was cost-effective to transport on rivers and rail, abundant (at a cost to ecosystem health, at times), inexpensive, and easy to work with. Light-frame wood construction remains popular for homes in the U.S., but with the advancement of steel and concrete use, skyscrapers went up, and timber’s popularity went down.


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