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Red Stag development selected as gluelam showcase

Clearwater Quays Apartments, part of the Red Stag group of vertically integrated wood processing and development businesses, has been selected to showcase the use of engineered mass timber in mid-rise buildings.

The Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) has announced a partnership with Red to deliver Mid-rise Wood Construction, a four-year, $5 million Primary Growth Partnership (PGP) programme.

Red Stag Investments is contributing $3 million (60%) and MPI $2 million (40%) over the four-year term of the programme. Clearwater Quays is the first of two builds under the programme and will be a showcase example of the use of large format glue laminated (glulam) beams and cross laminated timber (CLT) panels. The system makes for a lightweight, strong and rapid building system, using components that are precision engineered off-site.

“Combining CLT, glulam and panelised framing timber is a cost-effective, fast, resilient, and sustainable system for mid-rise construction,” said Red Stag Group chief executive Marty Verry.

“Our PGP programme aims to encourage widespread adoption of precision-engineered timber in mid-rise building construction in New Zealand.”

Boosting wooden construction

The new programme aims to boost mid-rise building construction using New Zealand-engineered and panelised framing timber and deliver a range of regional, social, environmental and other benefits..

The five-storey apartment in Christchurch is being built by NaylorLove with completion expected in the summer of 2019-20.

The programme will assemble a collective of excellence – a pool of New Zealand professionals experienced in mid-rise wood building design and construction – to help share and grow knowledge and expertise within the broader industry, according to MPI.

The two mid-rise wooden buildings will act as reference sites and inform case studies.

Steve Penno, director investment programmes at MPI, said benefits from the PGP programme will be felt beyond the co-investors.

“Engineered timber provides the opportunity for New Zealand to add significant value to New Zealand grown timber,” he said.

“It’s also a natural and sustainable resource. The programme aims to substantially increase demand for engineered wood products in buildings, which will have associated flow-on benefits across the entire supply chain. This will create new regional jobs and renewed investment in forestry, processing, manufacturing, construction, and prefabrication.”

Verry said the apartments had been designed to both showcase the materials used, as well as be ideal for those looking for a spacious, warm, single-level apartment that owners don’t need to worry about if they travel for extended periods of time.

The building has eight boutique apartments ranging from 150sqm to 235sqm with three already sold. The developer plans to sell just two more prior to construction. Red Stag will also be developing an integrated health spa, gym and café/restaurant near to the boutique apartment building.

Verry said mass timber had proven very popular overseas and was starting to be recognised more in New Zealand as a high performing solution in earthquake zones and as a clean green method of building.

“As a large-scale wooden system it also performs well in fires, although we will be adding sprinklers for additional peace of mind. Australian and UK research has also proven wood and natural materials to have significant health and relaxation effect on occupants, so that is something we and the government are also very keen to promote.”

Verry said engineered timber provided a very strong, low carbon and comparably low-cost alternative to steel and concrete.

“It’s easier to transport, relatively light and has outstanding earthquake and fire resilience. The use of prefabrication can speed up construction by as much as 30 percent and reduce cost to help meet New Zealand’s acute need for more accommodation.”

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