Wood Warehouses Getting Bigger in Japan

By: Kevin Bews

SPF Manager, Canada Wood Japan

Images: Sanuki Cotton Warehouse in Kanagawa Prefecture

A recent survey released by the Japan 2×4 Home Builders Association reported that its members were involved in designing and building a total of twelve warehouses across Japan in fiscal 2021. As we have been noting in previous blog articles, we are seeing our joint promotional work with our Japanese partners yielding dividends by increasing both the size and number of warehouses being constructed with wood. Indeed, during a trip to southwest Japan to visit a customer last month, I had the opportunity to tour the “Sanuki Cotton Warehouse” currently under construction in Kanagawa Prefecture. It’s a spacious two-story building, with a total floor area of 1,353 m², built using platform frame construction. The large roof and floor spans (9.5 m) for the building were achieved using engineered wood (LVL). The building’s walls and roof were assembled using SPF dimension lumber and sheathed with Canadian OSB. The total volume of all the wood products used in the building, including sheathing, is estimated to be about 240 m³. The warehouse is owned by the Sanuki Cotton Company, and was designed and built by Takaken-Kobo. The wooden structure was supplied and erected by Dainihon Wood-Preserving Co., Ltd. (DMB Shikoku), and the building was engineered by the Sakai Architectural Design Office. It is wonderful to see that natural products like cotton will be stored and cared for in buildings made from wood. Considering the numerous old and aging warehouses one comes across while traveling in Japan, I am confident that we will continue to see this trend!