INSEP - Pôle Sportif, Paris (75)

Construction between tradition and future

"The Wood That Makes Our Cities" is dedicated to the ecological, economic, industrial as well as technical challenges of using wood as a material in urban development. It is based on the example of forestry and wooden architecture in France.

Wood is a renewable raw material that stores Co2 and serves as a versatile building material. But where does the building material come from in individual cases, and how can sustainable forestry and wood processing be practiced? To what extent does the use of wood as a building material also put current job profiles and qualifications in architecture, engineering and the building trades to the test? The editors of the publication "The Wood That Makes our Cities: An Investigative Book" - journalist Michèle Leloup, photographer Cyrille Weiner, and architects François Leclercq and Paul Laigle of the architecture and urban planning firm Leclercq Associés - address these and other questions about the opportunities and challenges for building with wood. The focus is on the situation of the wood industry in France. "A quintessentially traditional material, wood today is revered almost as sacred, and is viewed as a miracle solution to tackle climate issues and make the construction industry greener. But wood is so much more: it is a clever material, accessible to all and with the potential to solve contemporary urban challenges. Additionally, it is compatible with approaches emphasizing strong local ties, and presents an opportunity to rejuvenate regional production networks," says Francois Leclercq.

In addition to the richly illustrated presentation of five of its own projects by the architecture and urban planning firm Leclercq Associés, a study on the state of the French forests, the timber industry, research and development in forestry is thus also presented. In addition, there are interviews, such as with the historian Andrée Corvol, among others research director at the Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS) in Paris or with Patrick Molinié, head of construction development at the wood research institute FCBA. Likewise, an excursus will present the work of Austrian architect Hermann Kaufmann, who taught for many years as a university professor of timber construction at the Institute of Design and Timber Construction at the Technical University of Munich and whose further development of traditional timber architecture in Vorarlberg attracted international attention.

"The Wood That Makes Our Cities" thus offers a compact documentation on the subject of building with wood in France, exciting in terms of content, though unfortunately at times a bit difficult to read thanks to the layout chosen - while the photographs have been given plenty of blank space, the decision has been made to provide the continuous text with only a few breaks. (am)

"The Wood That Makes Our Cities"
Publisher: Park Books
Edited by Michèle Leloup, Cyrille Weiner, Jad Hussein, François Leclercq and Paul Laugle
Language: English
1st edition, 2022
192 pages, 175 illustrations
ISBN 978-3-03860-258-3

48 Euro