Arup is working with Climate-KIC, the EU’s climate innovation initiative; real estate investor Lendlease and grant-making fund Built by Nature to co-curate the new ‘Perception of Timber’ exhibition to raise awareness of the benefits of building in timber. The initiative also included WTA, Polimi and Enso as partners.

Taking place in Milan’s innovation district, MIND, the exhibition stems from a series of workshops organised by the partners to explore barriers in the use of timber as a construction material and create a roadmap towards widespread adoption across Europe.

The initiative explored why and how the market can move to adopt mass timber as a low carbon technology to decarbonise our building stock by engaging with key industry players: developers, investors, designers, insurers and assets owners; and the public administration.

“To meet Europe’s climate change targets, we need to develop our buildings in a more sustainable manner through the use of regenerative and nature-based resources such as timber,” said Tecla Caroli, an architect at Arup in Milan.

Arup leveraged its local market knowledge and engineering expertise on timber building design to offer cross-cutting technical and content advice during the design of the workshops and the curation of the exhibition.

Upping the ante on timber’s social, environmental and economic feasibility, the exhibition walked the visitors around the 9x9m2 MIND timber pavilion, prototypes of multistorey timber structures, modular stands of timber beams and columns, cubes of laminated timber, and a suite of learning boards. Arup showcased its design work on three high rise timber buildings – HAUT, 80 M Street SE and Sky Believe in Better Building.