Wood has long been regarded as a viable material for construction thanks to numerous factors, namely design flexibility, efficiency, and affordability—making it especially popular for smaller housing projects. Add in a smaller carbon footprint than concrete or steel, and wood can also be seen as a much more sustainable choice. But from an acoustical standpoint, there are concerns that cannot be ignored.

How soundproof are wood-framed buildings? Can occupants come to enjoy the same privacy in wood structures as they have come to expect from steel and concrete buildings? The short answer to both of these questions is ‘yes’ – but only when the building is properly designed.

Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) construction is a new sector in the industry and is still evolving. We work with our clients to evaluate different design options using CLT to ensure that acoustical separation design targets are met. The current industry standards do not always work with wood construction and careful and innovative approaches are often required to find practical and cost-effective solutions. We understand the gaps of bare-minimum code design and can deliver projects that are as acoustically comfortable and private as you require. This approach has been very successful on the Eastern Washington University Catalyst Building and Wood Innovation and Design Centre projects.