Inje County’s “Getgol Recreational Forest” Project – Concrete to Wood Conversion Project

By: Tai Jeong

Country Director, Canada Wood Korea

In the South Korean county of Inje, stands a job site home to 20 units of wood-frame houses built with Canadian wood products. Planned initially as concrete construction, the “Getgol Recreational Forest” project was converted to wood thanks to the efforts made by two renowned Korean architecture firms: RealLab Architects and OZ Design Group.

Project rendering

Speed and ease of construction were just two of the many benefits that the firms employed to convince the developer. Carbon and sustainability were also persuasive. Principals of the two design firms were first introduced to wood frame construction in 2007 by Canada Wood Korea (CWK). Since then, they have enhanced their reputations by designing some of Korea’s most iconic wood projects, such as the Alberta Pavilion for the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics. Gil Soo Heo, Principal of RealLab, participated in CWK-KWCA (Canada Wood and Korean Wood Construction Association) ‘s Wood Construction School as an architectural student and Dae Kwan Ju, Principal of OZ, is the co-organizer of many CWK-KWCA training workshops.

Wood frame structure on concrete podium

South Korea has a sizable but fragmented wood construction market.  Pandemic induced lifestyle changes have profoundly impacted housing demand patterns in the construction sector. Remote work, virtual school, more family members at home and changing quarantining restrictions have created the need for more single-family homes. Housing demand occurring outside of downtown metro areas has prompted more Korean developers to focus on developing single-family and townhouse home complexes such as this example in cities and townships adjacent to the metropolis.

6 detached wood frame houses under construction
The wood frame structure is built with Canadian wood products and insulated by Canadian foam insulation material