Canada Wood Today | The Canada Wood Group

The Mark of the Beginning of Korean Tall Wood Buildings

Sunny Kim

By Sunny Kim

Program Manager / Market Development & Market Access, Canada Wood Korea

September 29, 2016

Ki-Cheol Bae, Principal Architect of IDS Architects designed the laboratory

Ki-Cheol Bae, Principal Architect of IDS Architects designed the laboratory

South Korea is on the tall wood building bandwagon! The Central Laboratory of Forest Genetic Resources Department (FGRD) of the Korea Forest Research Institute (KFRI), completed in May 2016, is the largest wood frame construction in Korea.  The laboratory, established in Suwon City in Gyeonggi Province, has four storeys above ground with an architectural area of 4,500 m2 using post and beam construction.  The glulam beams, which allows for wide spans in multi storey and large scale wood frame construction, has drawn keen attention from the Korean building industry and future building owners.

Front elevation upon completion

Front elevation upon completion

Ki-Cheol Bae, Principal Architect of IDS Architects who designed the laboratory, participated in Canada Wood Korea’s Architect Mission to Canada in 2014, where he had the opportunity to visited numerous wood built development sites in the Okanagan, Banff, Calgary, Whistler and Vancouver.  Since then, he has been a huge advocate for wood frame construction and has made steady and persistent efforts.  As a result, he won first prize in the design competition for the FGRD laboratory in June 2013.

Interior exposed glulam

Interior exposed glulam

Dr. Moon-Jae Park, Director of the Dept. of Forest Products of KFRI said, “the completion of this building is recorded as the first successful example for boosting multi-storey wood frame constructions in Korea.  Based on this, KFRI will continue research and development, aiming to build a 5-storey wood frame construction by 2018 and a 10-storey wood framed apartment by 2022.”