A 70-Storey Wooden Skyscraper Could Be on It’s Way to Tokyo by 2041

By 2041 Tokyo could be home to a 70-storey wooden skyscraper that would cost around USD $5.6 billion.

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A 70-storey wooden skyscraper could be coming to Tokyo by 2041, as Japanese company Sumitomo Forestry Co. plans to create the building for their 350th anniversary. The building would be 350 metres tall and will cost approximately USD $5.6 billion.

The company said that it’s ultimate aim is to create an environmentally friendly city of high rise buildings made of wood, that will also help to “transform the town into a forest”.

wooden skyscraper tokyo

The building would be 90% wood with a comparatively small amount of steel added for structural support. It will take into account Japan’s seismic activity, for which buildings must be slightly flexible.

wooden skyscrapers interior

The interior of the wooden structure is to be home to apartments, offices, a hotel and shops spread over 455,000 sq metres. The structure is called the W350 Project (for now), and will have balconies on all four sides so that plants and greenery can grow around and through the building. A rooftop garden and large internal open spaces filled with light will also feature.

Japan has relied on wood to build traditional houses for generations, but strict fire regulations have meant that the use of wood has recently been banned. However, these regulations are starting to be waved, and the 2020 Olympic stadium in Tokyo is using wood in its design, as a reference to their traditional building techniques and talent.

Just last year the University of Columbia in Vancouver opened Brock Commons Tallwood House, a student accommodation building which is currently the tallest wooden building in the world. It stands at just 53 meters, and hence the W350 will far surpass that.

Every year, more and more architects are turning to wood as a primary construction material because it is a renewable resource and relatively easy to recycle. And whilst this skyscraper will cost twice the conventional amount for a building for the same size and scale, and require 200,000 cubic meters of wood, it will be the beginning of a new era for high rise buildings.

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