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A World in Wood. Re-imagining urban jungles

Our cities are great places to live. Bustling with activity, lots of facilities and a fast paced life are all the things that make living in the city interesting.

Let us take your imagination to the city of Woodbine- a mythical city where all buildings are made in wood. Woodbine is a hustling bustling city teeming with people from all walks of life. It is a commercial and residential hub of the world.  Of course we have all seen small houses in wood, but in the city of Woodbine, large complexes and even skyscrapers are made in wood. Let us take a walk through this unique city and see how it impacts us and the people living in it.

Instead of concrete jungle, Woodbine is a wooden jungle

As you walk through the streets, you notice that the landscape has a warm, enticing feel to it. While it is nowhere close to a real jungle, wooden jungles are far less overwhelming than concrete jungles. Woodbine has a soothing landscape that looks naturally beautiful.

Instead of concrete jungle, Woodbine is a wooden jungle

Houses cost less

Wood as a material of construction cuts down construction time considerably, thereby directly impacting costs. As a result houses in Woodbine cost much less to build. Repairs are easier and cheaper too. Wooden homes consume less energy leading to financial savings. So, people in this city have more disposable income to spend on other things!

Houses cost less

You breathe better

Wood naturally purifies and humidifies the air. Resultantly, people living in this city have access to cleaner air and have lesser respiratory problems.

You breathe better

Less reliance on paints and other harmful chemicals

Wood has a natural, beautiful grain that adds to the aesthetics of a space without much effort. While some use of paints, wallpapers and other decorative materials is common, it is definitely much lesser than steel and concrete homes. Everyone gains by using lesser chemicals.

Less reliance on paints and other harmful chemicals

Lower stress levels

Wood brings a sense of calm and a feeling of being connected with nature. Studies have proven that living in wooden structures has positive emotional and mental effects on people. It’s no surprise that people in this city smile more and often.

Lower stress levels

City consumes less energy

As wood is a natural insulator, it keeps you warm in winters and cool in the summers. There’s less energy consumption per home and overall the energy requirements of the entire city is significantly lower, benefitting the environment.

City consumes less energy

Pollution is lower

Construction alone contributes anywhere between 30-40% to total pollution levels. Steel and concrete structures have a high carbon footprint and also construction practices are high on noise and air pollution. Replacing these materials with wood has significantly lowered pollution levels, thus improving quality of life.

Pollution is lower

Less heat

More and more commercial buildings are being designed with a glass façade. This is completely counter-productive for a tropical country like India where the sun is extremely bright and hot. Sunlight reflected from these buildings further heats up the air and streets leading to an overall increase in temperature. Wooden buildings in this city instead absorb the heat and not reflect it, lowering overall temperature.

Less heat

Less construction waste in landfills

Conventional materials of construction are not bio-degradable and not easily recyclable. They make a quick journey to landfills where they just lie around for decades. Wood on the other hand is naturally bio-degradable and can be used for many applications even after being discarded. Fewer dumps at landfills mean lesser burden on this city.

Less construction waste in landfills

Less chance of earthquake damage

Earthquake resistant shelters the world over are built in wood due to its ability to dissipate the impact of shocks. In the unfortunate event of an earthquake, wood buildings are far more stable and much simpler to repair.

Less chance of earthquake damage

Overall, the world has less CO2

Sustainable forest management practices ensure that harvested trees are replaced with higher number of new saplings that grow into full trees. Trees store carbon throughout their lifecycle and younger trees sequester CO2 more efficiently than older trees. The net effect of sustainable forestry results in carbon dioxide being pulled out of the atmosphere and stored in trees in greater amounts, leading to a cleaner atmosphere at a global level. While you cannot directly experience it, it feels great to know that!

Overall, the world has less CO2

Woodbine seems like such a nice place to live in. Then why is it still an imaginary city?  Absence of technology to build tall buildings in wood and the lack of sustainable forest management practices up to the last decade had pushed wood out of the picture for some time.

However, in the present day scenario, wood construction technology has progressed by leaps and bounds and wood from sustainably managed forests is easy to procure. Wood is coming back into modern architecture and has some of the finest architects worldwide rooting for it. The time is right for architects and real estate developers to make a difference by offering wooden homes for a better quality of life.

British Columbia (B.C.), Canada is the world leader in sustainable forest management and is one of the most reliable sources of certified, standardized and graded wood for multiple applications. Canada boasts of many iconic modern structures that are created entirely in wood.

To know how you can use wood for your next project, write to our wood experts at info@canadianwood.in and we will get back to you swiftly.

FII India, funded by the government of British Columbia (B.C.), Canada represents Canadian wood in India for all its five species viz. Western Hemlock, Douglas-fir, Yellow-Cedar, Western Red Cedar and Spruce-Pine-Fir (SPF). FII works closely with architects, manufacturers, importers and real estate developers to provide technical and procurement assistance for their requirements free of any cost.