Two projects using American hardwoods have won awards at the Structural Timber Awards at the National Conference Centre, Birmingham alongside Timber Expo, as part of National Construction Week. Projects involving American hardwoods werenominated for seven awards in total.

The winners are:

• Best Healthcare Project – dRMM, Maggie’s Oldham
• Engineer of the Year – Arup, The Marylebone Cricket Club

David Venables, European Director of the American Hardwood Export Council, says: “I am delighted that our collaborators have had such enormous success at the awards. We have been experimenting and pushing hardwoods to their limits and these awards are a testament to both the designers and engineers who have advanced the use of this versatile material.”


Designed by dRMM Architects and supported by the AmericanHardwood Export Council, Maggie’s Oldham is the world’s firstbuilding made from hardwood cross-laminated timber (CLT). This is a pivotal moment for modern architecture and construction.

Maggie’s is a charity that provides practical and emotiona lsupport to people living with cancer. Built on the grounds of specialist NHS cancer hospitals, Maggie’s Centres are warm and welcoming places with qualified professionals on hand to offer a programme of support shown to improve physical and emotional wellbeing.

dRMM chose tulipwood for the design of Maggie’s Oldham for the positive influence wood has on people and for the beauty, strength and warmth inherent to American tulipwood. Wood is known to significantly reduce blood pressure, heart rates and recovery times; it has more health and wellbeing benefits thann any other building material, according to Wood Housing Humanity Report 2015.

This pioneering piece of permanent architecture is constructed from more than 20 panels of five layer cross-laminated American tulipwood, ranging in size from 0.5m – 12m long. It was engineered by the Booth King Partnership. It is the first building in the UK completely clad in thermally modified tulipwood.

American tulipwood CLT was pioneered in 2013 by dRMM, AHEC and Arup for its unparalleled strength and lightness, speed of construction and sustainability. American tulipwood is approximately 70% stronger in bending than a typical CLT grade softwood. The structural CLT panels for Maggie’s Oldham were developed by CLT specialists, Züblin Timber. The first public experiment with this building material was The Endless Stair, created for the London Design Festival 2013 and displayed outside Tate Modern in London. Arup’s engineering calculations show the structure could have supported 100n people at any one time.

Tulipwood CLT is one of the most sustainable timber species because of how fast it replenishes, through natural growth alone. Maggie’s Oldham contains 27.6m3 of American tulipwood and 1.1m3 of American ash, equivalent to around 55.22m3 and 2.1m3 respectively of sawn wood before processing, which comes from around 115.7m3 of logs – and all these logs will be replaced by new growth in just 120 seconds (108 seconds for the tulipwood and 12 seconds for the ash).

Maggie’s Oldham was nominated for:

Heathcare Project of the Year – dRMM
Architect of the Year – dRMM
Engineer of the Year – Booth King Parternship
Project of the Year


The Warner Stand at Lord’s Cricket Ground is an engineering marvel made of American white oak and features in the redevelopment of the Warner Stand at one of the world’s most iconic sporting facilities, Lord’s Cricket Ground in St John’s Wood, London.

The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) commissioned architectsn Populous to design the new stand, which is part of an ongoing masterplan to improve visitor experience and boost the international reputation of Lord’s.

The Warner Stand, Lord’s Cricket Ground. Photo: Jon Cardwell

In this pioneering project, the roof of the stand is formed from 11 cantilevered glue laminated (glulam) American white oak beams, manufactured in Germany by specialist timber fabricators Hess Timber, that radiate dramatically from the corner of the ground, paving the way for brave new structural uses of sustainable American hardwoods.

Each beam measures 900mm x 350mm at the deepest point. The longest glulam beam weighs approximately 4 tonnes and measures 23.4 metres in length, the same as 26 cricket bats lined up nose to tail. They are all covered by a lightweight fabric roof covering. The AHEC ‘Grown in Seconds sustainability calculator’ shows that the 100m3 of American white oak lumberused to fabricate the beams will have taken 160 seconds to be
replenished by new growth in the American forest.

The Lord’s Cricket Ground was nominated for:
Engineer of the Year – ARUP

For over 20 years the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) has been at the forefront of wood promotion in Europe, successfully building a distinctive and creative brand for U.S.n hardwoods. AHEC’s support for creative design projects such as nThe Wish List, Endless Stair, and now The Smile, for the London Design Festival demonstrate the performance potential of these sustainable materials and provide valuable inspiration. @ahec_europe.