Alexandra Kleeman Discusses Reasons U.S. Use of Cross-Laminated Timber May Grow

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In a new article in Reuters Legal News and Westlaw Today, Alexandra Kleeman discusses advantages of cross-laminated timber (CLT), why U.S. builders have been slow to adopt it for their projects, and some developments in the construction industry that may spur its use in residential and commercial projects.

Commonly used in Europe for two decades, CLT is made by gluing together layers of lumber in an orientation that gives the finished product greater structural integrity than regular timber—its load-bearing capacity can rival that of concrete or steel. CLT is a sustainable building material in that it is made from species of trees that have few other uses and tend to fuel forest fires.

Real estate and environmental law partner Kleeman notes that despite CLT’s many benefits, U.S. builders have been slow to adopt the material—possible reasons include its higher production costs compared to other forms of timber or its relative novelty. She points to three recent developments in the construction industry that may spur increased use of CLT:

  • States and localities are updating their building codes to permit and encourage its use.
  • Insurers are beginning to show a willingness to insure CLT buildings.
  • Developers are recognizing that thanks to how it is made, CLT tends to be a healthier building material than traditional materials, many of which are manufactured using products that release volatile compounds.

You can read the full article here.

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Alexandra Kleeman
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