Identification of Research Areas to Advance the Adoption of Cross-Laminated Timber in North America

Omar Espinoza, Urs Buehlmann, Maria Laguarda, Vladimir Rodriguez Trujillo


Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) is emerging as a promising building system that could help revitalize a dwindling
forest sector. However, little research has been conducted about CLT, particularly in the marketing realm. Our
paper helps bridge this gap. Specifically, we aim to identify research areas that are important to successfully
advance CLT as a building material in North America. Our findings, based on a survey of experts, suggest that
the level of awareness about CLT among building professionals in general is low. However, architects are
considered knowledgeable about the product. Experts consider that the most important barriers to the adoption
of CLT are(a) misperceptions held by building industry professionals about wood and CLT, (b) compatibility of
building codes with CLT, and (c) the availability of technical information about CLT as a construction system. In
terms of most pressing research areas for advancing CLT, experts consider that it is important to shed more light
on its seismic and fire performance, and also on proper connectors and fasteners used in CLT-based construction.


Cross-Laminated Timber, CLT, engineered wood products, awareness, research needs

Full Text:



Alreck, P.L.; Settle, R.B. (2004). The survey research handbook. vol xxv, 463 p. :. vol HN29 .A46 2004, 3rd ed. edn. McGraw-Hill/Irwin, Boston.

Anonymous. (2015). U.S. Tall Wood Building Prize Competition. Accessed: September 6, 2015.

APA. (2015). The Engineered Wood Association. The Engineered Wood Association. Accessed: April 7, 2015.

ASCE. (2007). ASCE/SEI 7 Minimum Design Loads For Buildings and Other Structures. American Society of Civil Engineers, Reston, VA.

AWC. (2015a). The American Wood Council American Wood Council. Accessed: April 7, 2015.

AWC. (2015b). American Wood Council. American Wood Council. Accessed: September 10, 2015.

Bland, K.; Coats, P. (2013). Wood Construction and the International Building Code. Kenilworth Media Inc.

Bowyer, J.; Bratkovich, S.; Frank, M.; Fernholz, K.; Howe, J.; Stai, S. (2011. Managing Forests for Carbon Mitigation. Dovetail Partners, Inc., Minneapolis, MN.

Canadian Wood Council. (2011). Cross-Laminated Timber Symposium. Accessed: May 1st, 2015.

Ceccotti, A.; Sandhaas, C.; Okabe, M.; Yasumura, M.; Minowa, C.; Kawai, N. (2013). SOFIE project – 3D shaking table test on a seven-storey full-scale cross-laminated timber building Earthquake Engineering & Structural Dynamics 42:2003-2021 doi:10.1002/eqe.2309

Chen, Y. (2012). Comparison of Environmental Performance of a Five-Storey Building Built with Cross-Laminated Timber and Concrete. University of British Columbia - Department of Wood Science, Vancouver, B.C., Canada.

Construction Canada. (2015). Québec allowing lumber use for 12-storey buildings.

CORRIM. (2010). The Consortium for Research on Renewable Industrial Materials. Accessed: October 19th., 2010.

Crespell, P.; Gagnon, S. (2011). Cross-Laminated Timber: a Primer. FPInnovations, Vancouver, B.C. Canada.

Crespell, P.; Gaston, C. (2011). The Value Proposition for Cross-Laminated Timber. FPInnovations. Vancouver, B.C. Canada.

Canadian Wood Council. (2015). The Canadian Wood Council CWC.

Canadian Wood Council. Accessed: April 7th. 2015.

Dillman, D.A. (2000). Mail and internet surveys : the tailored design method. Wiley, New York.

Dillman, D.A. (2009). Internet, mail, and mixed-mode surveys : the tailored design method vol xii, vol HM538 .D55 2009, 3rd ed. / edn. Wiley & Sons, Hoboken, N.J. 499 p.

Dillman, D.A.; Smyth, J.D.; Christian, L.M. (2009). Internet, Mail, and Mixed-Mode Surveys: The Tailored Design Method. Third edn. Wiley, New York.

Durlinger, B.; Crossin, E. Wong, J. (2013). Life Cycle Assessment of a cross laminated timber building. Forest & Wood Products Australia, Melbourne, Australia.

Espinoza, O.; Trujillo, V.R.; Laguarda-Mallo, M.F.; Buehlmann, U. (2015). Cross-Laminated Timber: Status and Research Needs in Europe (IN REVIEW) Manuscript submitted for publication.

Evans, L. (2013). Cross Laminated Timber: Taking wood buildings to the next level. Architectural Record. 2014.

Forest Products Laboratory. (2010). Wood handbook - Wood as an engineering material. Gen. Tech. Rep. FPL–GTR–190. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory, Madison, WI.

Forestry Innovation Investment Ltd. (2015). Wood First Program. Forestry Innovation Investment Ltd. Accessed: September 4th. 2015.

Fountain, H. (2012). Wood That Reaches New Heights. The New York Times Company

FPInnovations. (2015a). FPInnovations. Accessed: April 5th, 2015.

FPInnovations. (2015b). FPInnovations. Accessed September 6th, 2015.

Forest Products Laboratory. (2015). Forest Products Laboratory. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Forest Service. Accessed: April 7th. 2015.

Forest Products Management Development Institute. (2014). Forest Products Management Development Institute. Regents of the University of Minnesota. Accessed April 19th. 2014.

Hendrickson, C.; Au, T. (1989). Project Management for Construction: Fundamental Concepts for Owners, Engineers, Architects, and Builders. Prentice Hall.

Hopkins, P. (2012). Timber challenges steel as the new apartment building stock.

Hubbard, S.S.; Bowe, S.A. (2010). A Gate-to-Gate Life-Cycle Inventory of Solid Hardwood Flooring in the Eastern US. Wood and Fiber Science. 42:79-89.

ICC. (2015). International Code Council. International Code Council. Accessed: April 19th., 2015.

John S, Nebel B, Perez N, Buchanan A (2008) Environmental Impacts of Multi-Storey Buildings Using Different Construction Materials. University of Canterbury - Department of Civil and Natural Resources Engineering, Christchurch, New Zealand.

Karacabeyli, E. Douglas, B. (eds). (2013). Cross-Laminated Timber Handbook. FPInnovations and Binational Softwood Lumber Council, Pointe-Claire, QC.

Laguarda-Mallo, M.F. (2014). Awareness, Perceptions and Willingness to Adopt Cross-Laminated Timber in the United States. Master’s Degree Thesis. University of Minnesota. Minnepolis. Minnesota.

Laguarda-Mallo, M.F.; Espinoza, O. (2014). Outlook for Cross-Laminated Timber in the United States BioResources 9:7427-7443.

Laguarda-Mallo, M.F.; Espinoza, O. (2015). Awareness, Perceptions and Willingness to Adopt Cross-Laminated Timber in the United States. Journal of Cleaner Production. 198-210.

Lattke, F.; Lehmann, S. (2007). Multi-Storey Residential Timber Construction: Current Developments in Europe Journal of Green Building. 2, 119-129 doi:10.3992/jgb.2.1.119

Lattke, F.; Lehmann, S. (2007). Multi-storey timber constructions: Recent trends J Green Building. 2, 119-130.

Law, S. (2014). Grant will help develop Oregon's first cross-laminated timber plant. Pamplin Media Group. Portland, OR.

Lend Lease Corporation. (2013). Forté Building. Lend Lease Corporation. Accessed: November 18th, 2014.

Lippke, B.; Wilson, J.; Perez-Garcia, J.; Bowyer, J.; Meil, J. (2004). CORRIM: Life-Cycle Environmental Performance of Renewable Building Materials. Forest Products Journal. 54:8

Malczyk, R. (2011). Cross-Laminated Timber in British Columbia. In: CLT Symposium, February 8-9, p 63.

Malmquist, C (2015). Manufacturing CLT in the US: Challenges and opportunities. Forest Business Network. Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.

MIG Inc. (2013). IMPLAN Economic Modeling. MIG, Inc. Accessed: April 26th , 2013.

Muszyński, L. (2015). The CLT Talk. Forest Business Network. Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.

NCSU. (2015). CLT Panels USA. North Carolina State University. Accessed: April 5th., 2015.

OSU. (2015). Wood Science and Engineering. Oregon State University, Wood Science and Engineering. Accessed: April 5th. 2015.

Partnership BC. (2013). Wood Innovation and Design Centre Project. Partnership BC.

Plackner, H. (2015a). Brettsperrholz wlichst global. vol. 2015. Agrarverlag.

Plackner, H. (2015b). Potenzial ist riesig.

Plackner, H. (2015c). World’s largest CLT plant planned in Montana.

Priddy, M. (2014). Business of the Year: SmartLam. Flathead Beacon, Kalispell, Montana.

Qualtrics. (2014). Qualtrics Survey Software vol 2014. Qualtrics, LLC, Provo, Utah.

Quenneville, P.; Morris, H. (2007). Japan Kobe Earthquake Shake Table Simulation - The Earthquake Performance of Multi-storey Cross Laminated Timber Buildings. New Zealand Timber Design Journal. 15:3-8.

Rea, L.M. (2005). Designing and conducting survey research : a comprehensive guide vol xvi, vol HA31.2 .R43 2005, 3rd ed. edn. Jossey-Bass, San Francisco. 283 p.

Robertson, A.B. (2011). A Comparative Life Cycle Assessment of Mid-Rise Office Building Construction Alternatives: Laminated Timber or Reinforced Concrete. The University of British Columbia.

Robertson, A.B.; Lam, F.C.F.; Cole, R.J. (2012). A Comparative Cradle-to-Gate Life Cycle Assessment of Mid-Rise Office Building Construction Alternatives: Laminated Timber or Reinforced Concrete Buildings. 245-270.

Silva, C.V.; Branco, J.M.; Lourenço, P.B. A project contribution to the development of sustainable multi-storey timber buildings. In: Portugal SB13 - Contribution of Sustainable Building to Meet EU 20-20-20 Targets. 379-386.

SOM. (2013). Timber Tower Research Project. Skidmore, Owings & Merril, LLP.

Steiger, R.; Gülzow, A.; Gsell, D. (2008) Non destructive evaluation of elastic material properties of crosslaminated timber (CLT). Paper presented at the Conference COST E53, 29-30 October 2008, Delft, The Netherlands.

UBC. (2015). Department of Wood Science - University of British Columbia. University of British Columbia. Accessed: April 7th., 2015.

Universite Laval. (2015). Departement des Sciences du Bois et de la Foret - Universite Laval. Universite Laval. Accessed: April 7th. 2015.

University of Waterloo. (2015). Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering - University of Waterloo. University of Waterloo. Accessed: April 7th., 2015.

USDA. (2014). Announcement of Requirements and Registration for the U.S. Tall Wood Building Prize Competition. Federal Register. The Daily Journal of the United States Government.

Virginia Tech. (2015). Department of Sustainable Biomaterials. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Accessed: April 5th., 2015.

WCTE. (2014). World Conference on Timber Engineering. Agora Communication Inc. Accessed: April 19th., 2015.

Wells, M. (2011). Tall timber buildings: Applications of solid timber construction in multi-storey buildings. CTBUH 1. 24-26.

Wilson, J.B.; Lippke, B.; Comnick, J.; Johnson, L.R.; Perez-Garcia, J.; Dancer, E.R.; Puettmann, M.E. (eds) (2005) Special Issue: The Environmental Performance of Renewable Building Materials in the Context of Residential Construction vol 37. CORRIM. Society of Wood Science & Technology.

Woodworks. (2015). Woodworks. Accessed March 8th., 2015.


  • There are currently no refbacks.