Vooruit expands with CLT

Locatie: Ghent

Jaar: 2018

Architect: D.I.A.L. Architects - arch. Geert Pauwels

Bouwheer: Kunstencentrum Vooruit VZW - Gent

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Change is in the air at Ghent culture temple Vooruit. Thanks to an extension, built in CLT behind a protected facade, the entrance area has been completely renewed. The new part is an integral part of the event hall.

Invisible expansion?

No, it's hard to see on the street side, but behind the facade of the so-called " Snoepwinkel “(Candy Store), the Vooruit underwent a complete metamorphosis. The façade of the protected building was retained, but behind this facade a new building was constructed in CLT wood panels. The renewed terraced house has three floors and is an integral part of the spaces used by the Vooruit.

A jigsaw puzzle of CLT panels

Laminated Timber Solutions installed the load-bearing timber structures for general contractor Detrac. The challenge? Working around and between protected facades in the centre of a busy city. Logistics coordination was of the utmost importance. In consultation with the main contractor and the city, the CLT panels were brought to the site piece by piece, stored in order, and lifted over the facades during installation. The finished panels fit together like building blocks, taking into account the slanted, historic side walls. Precision and finish were essential. The wooden walls and panels are visible from the interior.

Only 15 days at the construction site

The choice for CLT had several advantages during the construction phase. Speed of execution, for example: the construction phase lasted only 15 days. But also a high level of energy friendliness. The extension to the Vooruit is almost-energy-neutral (BEN) certified. “Wood is the only building material that stores CO², even after the tree has been cut down. Building with wood is better than CO² neutral: it is CO² negative", emphasises Dieter Penninck of LTS.

This project in figures

94 m3

timber product volume

58.370 CO2


389.133 km

less exhaust gases

64 households

less electricity consumption

15 working days

duration of construction