The Interbuild exhibition in Johannesburg in September provided a platform to showcase timber in construction in a full-scale timber frame home which was erected in one of the exhibition halls.
The idea was first put forward by the Institute of Timber Frame Builders (ITFB) and the exhibition house was coordinated as a joint venture by the Wood Foundation and the Institute of Timber Construction (ITC) so that all aspects of timber construction could be displayed.
A working group was formed to put the project into motion, including Werner Slabbert of Eco Log Homes, Gerard Busse of Arch Wood Protection, Jenny de Waal of the ITFB, Samantha Beresford of York Timbers and Alan MacGregor of Flagship Communications.
The Wood Foundation House, as it became known, demonstrated in a very tangible way, timber’s strength, versatility, durability and its excellent thermal and acoustic qualities. The exhibition also highlighted timber’s low carbon footprint in production, the fact that it is derived from a renewable resource and that it lends itself to speedy construction at competitive prices.
Numerous stakeholders in the timber sector participated as sponsors of the house, providing materials, expertise or time. Architect Jacques Cronje provided his services for the design of the house; Werner Slabbert, owner of Eco Log Homes, undertook the construction work, and a host of other companies contributed to the finished home.
99% of the timber used was SA Pine, including laminated posts and beams, solid interlocking logs, log profile cladding in various thickness, cabin board, pine decking, saligna decking, pine shutter ply boarding, and pine tongue and groove flooring, plus an example of bamboo flooring.
The project was fast tracked. Various components were built in panels for easy re-erection at the show and the house was built up on the exhibition stand in just two weeks, in time for the opening. It was fully functional and included a kitchen, lounge, bedroom, en-suite bathroom and decking.