Daniel Burneo Lyra de Lemos

Exploration of 3 alternatives for a wooden tower in Vaasa

The work is based on an ideas competition whose objective was the design of an 8-storey office wooden building (A). In days when the concept of workplace is under examination and the subject of flexibility of use seems more important than ever, it becomes interesting to study the possibilities of its change of use.

The work consists on further planning of the original project and the proposal of other 2 wooden scenarios, varying use and height but nonetheless similar: an 8-storey apartment building (B) and a 19-storey apartment building (C).

By putting together these three similar concepts of tower we can compare the possible solutions and get hints on aspects to consider when planning a building that can change its use during its lifespan. The comparison focuses in the aspects that might be the most limiting for its change of use: fire safety and structural system.

In fire safety, height and use will end up determining different solutions. Two of the height limits that the Finnish fire regulation establishes are: 28 m (under which attainable by firefighting ladders) and 56 m (over which it will be in the most restrictive fire class). The idea here is to try both ends of the regulation, for the most common uses of multi-storey buildings (housing and office).

When it comes to the structure, height and use will also determine the suitability of a structural system. Here, the work focuses in applying the pre-fabricated ones: post & beam, spatial elements and wall elements.