banner Japanese Timber Architecture in the Modern Era A Sustainable Approach


Japanese Timber Architecture in the Modern Era A Sustainable Approach


Japanese Timber Architecture in the Modern Era


Japanese Timber Architecture in the Modern Era Japan's National Stadium Sets the Stage for Timber Innovation

Japan's National Stadium stands as a remarkable testament to the use of timber in contemporary construction. Timber, once a staple of traditional Japanese architecture, is now gaining recognition as a key component in achieving a carbon-neutral society and combating global warming. In this article, we explore the timeless Japanese techniques employed in sustainable timber architecture, as well as current endeavors and future prospects.

Kiyomizu-dera: A Temple's Resilience Across Centuries

Kiyomizu-dera Temple, an iconic symbol of Japan's timber craftsmanship, has endured for over 1,200 years. Its current main hall, dating back to 1633, has been meticulously reconstructed each time it faced destruction by fire.


Kiyomizu-dera Temple

Remarkably, no nails were used in the construction of Kiyomizu-dera Temple's pillars.

Enlarge photo

In addition to routine maintenance, Japanese Timber Architecture Kiyomizu-dera Temple undergoes significant renovations every two decades for its main hall stage and every 40 to 50 years for its roof. Notably, the main hall's roof was recently re-thatched for the first time in half a century, employing a traditional Japanese technique known as hiwadabuki, which has earned UNESCO recognition as an Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Repairing Kiyomizu-dera Temple

Enlarge photo

The main hall's stage is supported by pillars crafted from 400-year-old Japanese zelkova trees, renowned for their exceptional durability, which is roughly twice the age of the trees themselves. Preparing construction materials for the next 400 years involves sustainable tree planting and cultivation within Kiyomizu-dera Temple's own forests in Kyoto.


Harnessing Timber's Potential in Tokyo's Olympic Venues

Approximately 40% of Japan's forested areas consist of artificially cultivated forests, established in the 1950s, Japanese Timber Architecture which are now mature and ready for use. Allowing these trees to stand without intervention could lead to decay and potential disasters like landslides.

Image of a forest

The time has come to harvest mature trees for various large-scale construction projects while also facilitating reforestation by planting new trees. During their growth stages, young forests effectively absorb substantial amounts of CO2, contributing significantly to global warming prevention.

The Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games in the summer of 2021 showcased a notable commitment to timber usage in their venues, underscoring the urgency of environmental action.

Japan's National Stadium

Designed by world-renowned architect Kuma Kengo, Japan's National Stadium features timber sourced from diverse regions of Japan for its striking façade.

Enlarge photoAriake Gymnastics CentreEnlarge photoInterior of the Ariake Gymnastics CentreEnlarge photo

The Ariake Gymnastics Centre also prominently features timber, notably boasting a 90-meter-long timber arch supporting its roof, among the largest in the world.

The Challenge of Crafting Earthquake-Resistant Timber Skyscrapers

In the pursuit of a carbon-neutral society, a pioneering construction company is embarking on the ambitious goal of constructing an all-timber high-rise building. Japanese Timber Architecture This endeavor involves utilizing timber for the entire structure, including columns, beams, and floors, in a bid to minimize CO2 emissions and reduce environmental impact.

An all-timber high-rise fire-resistant buildingEnlarge photoBuilders working on the constructionEnlarge photo

Yet, building an all-timber high-rise structure in earthquake-prone Japan presents numerous challenges. Employing seismic isolation systems and innovative timber units capable of withstanding earthquakes, the construction company places these units at critical joints between columns and girders, where seismic forces are most potent. The result is a timber building designed to provide long-term safety and peace of mind.


Future Timber Architecture: Eco-Friendly and People-Centric

A venerable forestry company with over 300 years of history has embarked on a visionary endeavor: the construction of a 70-story, 350-meter-high timber skyscraper. This project aims to maximize timber's unique properties to create an environmentally friendly and aesthetically pleasing structure for all.


Computer-generated image of a timber skyscraper (1)Enlarge photoComputer-generated image of a timber skyscraper (2)Enlarge photo

Building skyscrapers using timber demands a significant quantity of this resource, prompting increased reforestation efforts to meet future demand for timber-based constructions. Researchers are diligently working on enhancing forestry cultivation efficiency by utilizing genetic information from trees to select optimal seedlings.

Researcher conducting genome research

Enlarge photoResearcher selecting seedlingsEnlarge photo


Post a Comment

* Please Don't Spam Here. All the Comments are Reviewed by Admin.