Alex de Rijke is one of the co-founders of dRMM Architects, a London based studio of international architects and designers. Over on ScottishArchitecture.com he discusses with Caroline Ednie, Web Editor, why he thinks timber is the new concrete. He says: "People tend to view different periods in terms of style but if you ignore the styles one can see that each century is characterised by the particular triumph of a material. Brick defines the 18th century; the 19th century is steel frame; concrete defines the 20th century; and I believe the 21st century material is timber."
"Timber is the new concrete because there is no downside to timber construction whereas every other construction process has quite serious downsides, particularly centred around carbon production. Timber works the other way - in timber there is hope for the future. In other materials if you’re making more carbon than you are steel for example, then it’s a no brainer. We’re working with pure timber because there are no downsides in terms of embodied energy and toxins."
For the whole interview, go to http://www.scottisharchitecture.com/article/view/Alex+de+Rijke+Interview