Report Shows Cost Advantage for Wood Infill Wall System over Alternatives

By: Tai Jeong

Country Director, Canada Wood Korea

A recent third-party cost comparison report conducted by a Korea general contractor company shows wood infill wall system can save 20% construction cost over traditional concrete walls. The study was done for the Seoul City Social Housing demo project, a 5-story concrete building with wood infill system applied as non-load-bearing exterior and interior walls. The demonstration project could usher in the new opportunity for the use of Canadian wood products in Korea’s mainstream concrete construction industry.

Wood infill walls are gaining in popularity as they are now being used by several architects and builders and Crown corporations like Gyeonggi Urban Innovation Corporation (GICO), Seoul Housing Corporation (SHC) and Korea Land & Housing Corporation (LHC). Market growth follows from the Long Life Housing policy introduced in 2013 by MLIT(Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Technology) that encourages the use of lightweight infill and partition walls to ease apartment and commercial building renovation.

The report analyzes the direct material cost and indirect cost of time-saving, labor and interior decoration and identifies the discrepancies. The conservative conclusion is that the wood infill wall is 20% less costly than that of concrete. The details are shown in the table below.

This cost comparison was researched by the general contractor of the demo project, Ziumjae Construction, and will be inserted to the demo project case study for further promotion of the wood in-fill wall system.

Seoul City Social Housing 5-storey wood infill wall demo house (Exterior façade)