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24 January, 2024

Built by Nature Fund to enhance technical understanding of multistorey timber housing in the Netherlands

AMSTERDAM January 24. Recognising the need for better technical knowledge and the upskilling of construction industry talent to support the adoption of multistorey mass timber housing in the Netherlands, the Built by Nature Fund has awarded a €122,000 grant to Urban Climate Architects and MAATworks Architects towards creation of an open-access knowledge and guidance resource from data and technical details compiled from existing buildings.  

The research project, “Setting the standard on detailing multistorey timber housing” will see the two mass timber architecture practices conduct an in-depth study of ten multistorey mass timber residences based on their performance data, design details, and relevant design approaches.  

Analysis will focus on the buildings’ structural, fire and acoustic performance, as well as broader design details. Research outputs will be captured across ten case studies, guidelines for mass timber design, and a set of design and technical details.  

“This Built by Nature-funded knowledge initiative will support mainstream designers, developers and investors in choosing mass timber for multistorey residential projects,”

according to Built by Nature CEO Paul King.

“Ultimately, this is about increased confidence, competency and comfort for detailing these projects among designers and the wider construction industry in the Netherlands and beyond.” 


“There is a mismatch between building in mass timber and Dutch regulations on fire and acoustics, which leads to discussion on actual approved solutions,”

according to Urban Climate Architects’ Director Dennis Hauer.

“We’ll be publishing details at a technical level of LoD500, which are a result of the experience gained from actual, realised buildings. Together with advisors and municipalities, this will lead to less discussion and more standardised solutions.” 


Lidewij Lenders, timber and biobased specialist at MAATworks Architects, adds: “This guidance project creates the foundation for a longer-term goal of setting a benchmark for acoustics in mass timber buildings, and to update current acoustic regulations in the Netherlands to better reflect the properties of mass timber.” 

A series of expert workshops will be convened during the project duration for both input and reporting back, with the project team following up with a comprehensive practical handbook, supported by an instructional video for broader digital dissemination.  


About Urban Climate Architects 
Urban Climate Architects is a progressive and innovative architectural firm with offices in Delft, Wroclaw and Groningen where approximately 25 professionals work on a wide range of projects on different scale levels. The focus is on densification and adding quality to the existing city by making high quality architecture. Creating a Paris-proof and healthy living environment and applying circular and biobased solutions are guiding principles. In addition to designing and realising buildings, the agency is also committed to developing and spreading knowledge in the field of circular construction as a partner of the Dutch Green Building Council.