G&T brought together experts from across the construction industry to discuss best practice methods as part of our ongoing Mass Timber Office series.

The expert panel shared knowledge and lessons learnt from their experiences of using mass timber during construction highlighting key considerations that need to be taken into account if choosing mass timber.

Notable names from across the sector included Steven Hearn, CEO of Mid-Group, Louisa Finlay, Managing Director at Kier, Graham Barter, Construction Director at Mace and Keith Patrick, Head of Quality Development and Supply Chain Management at GRAHAM as well as David Smith, Head of Façades and Structures at Lendlease.

The panel covered a number of topics including fire precautions, water ingress prevention and mitigation, obtaining project insurances, health & safety and how to work with mass timber in practice.

During the session the audience were asked a series of poll questions including what they believed the biggest challenge is when trying to achieve ‘best practice’ in mass timber construction. The majority (34%) of session attendees believed that ‘competent design’ is the biggest challenge in achieving best practice in timber construction.

The group noted the significance of using modern technology as part of the design process and the importance of using Building Information Management (BIM) that allows clients, developers and architects to understand exactly what they are getting before the design freeze.

Throughout the session the panel also covered key considerations both pre and during construction, including having a good lifting plan, understanding your programme and the proximity of your building to others. When considering how to improve current best practice in this area all participants agreed that good procurement advice and supply chain feedback is crucially important.

G&T launched the Mass Timber Office forum to bring together experts from across the industry to discuss and debate the barriers of using mass timber in office construction. Hosted by partners Matt Holman and Oliver Booth, these forums focus on hot topics such as Insurance, Fire and Sustainability, to help share knowledge and information that can be referred to when considering mass timber for commercial office projects.

For more information about the Mass Timber Office Forum or for access to the full report from the Sustainability panel please contact the team at masstimber@gardiner.com.