State-subsidized housing buildings made of wood

The Barcelona City Hall has decided to bet on wood as the main material in some of its constructions to favor the use of sustainable materials in construction.  

Sacyr Engineering and Infrastructure is constructing a building entirely made of wood in Barcelona, in a residential complex comprising four buildings including 238 state-subsidized housing for sale and lease.

“This isn’t the first time we make a building entirely of wood in Barcelona. In 2017 we participated in the transformation of the nave de almacenamiento de hilos, of the former Fabra & Coats factory, into a subsidized housing complex, of 46 homes, called Can Fabra”, explained Javier Astasio, Project manager of the new Illa Glories de Barcelona wooden building.

Building with wood has many advantages. Some of the pros are the faster execution and its use in industrial processes. This means that many elements are already pre-built, and only need to be assembled, like walls and deck slabs. In addition, wood is more sustainable environmentally wise.

The building will run on photovoltaic energy and aerothermics for air conditioning. The other buildings also include this feature.  



On the other hand, the building design includes a grey water recovery system, that goes into purification tanks to be reused in the sanitation system.

One of the cons is that the cost of the building would be higher than in concrete. It requires more elements since wood isn’t fireproof, and it uses fireproof gypsum planks. By using less concrete, the project causes less CO2 emissions. “We are also applying mixed concrete and wood construction techniques”, explains Astasio.

“This building has a mixed structure, because it also incorporates metal to fit the wooden beams”. The building is seven stories tall, a little shorter in height compared to the other buildings.

This isn’t the only wooden building currently being built in Barcelona. The Municipal Housing Institute in Barcelona is undertaking several state-subsidized housing developments in several districts.

  • Building
  • Wood

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