Japan plans to build world's tallest wooden skyscraper

Japan plans to build world's tallest wooden skyscraper

It is expected to cost around 600 billion Japanese yen ($5.6 billion).

The new building, which is being referred to as W350 Project, will be ten percent steel, combined with 180,000 cubic metres of indigenous wood.

The world's tallest wooden skyscraper is expected to tower almost 1,200 feet above Tokyo's streets, casting a shadow over the current highest wooden structure that reaches about 180 feet into the sky, Japanese company Sumitomo Forestry revealed.

The building itself will feature balconies on all four sides and greenery will be incorporated in the design, from the ground to the top floor. The construction of buildings made from timber was given a boost in 2010, when the Act for Promotion of Use of Wood in Public Buildings was put in place.

The "braced tube structure" will have diagonal steel vibration-control braces to "prevent deformation of the building due to lateral forces such as earthquakes and wind", according to the news release.

Although that's nearly double what a conventional high-rise building designed with current technology would cost, the company is hoping that amount would drop as timber became a more-frequently used building material.

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Currently, the tallest wooden building is 18-storeys high (53 meters) and serves as accommodation for students at the University of British Colombia.

The institute is looking at the "expanding possibilities for wooden buildings as a road map for future technology, such as the development of building methods, environmentally-friendly technologies, and trees that become resources and building materials", the company said.

"The interior structure is made of pure wood, producing a calm space that exudes warmth and gentleness", said Sumitomo in a statement.

Sumitomo Forestry, the lumber arm of one of Japan's largest corporations, is proposing the 70-storey hybrid timber skyscraper to mark the company's 350th anniversary in 2041.

"The devastation of domestic forests due to insufficient maintenance is becoming a problem".

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