Building a sustainable future: Timber innovation

We have the opportunity to address our contribution to the climate crisis

Construction is a net contributor to climate change and we're in the midst of a climate crisis. If we increase the level of productivity through our current utilization of materials we're going to accelerate ourselves towards a dying planet. 


In 2019 we partnered with McLaughlin & Harvey Construction Ltd to show industry, public sector and academia first-hand how cross laminated timber can transform the way we build.

The Moxie Hotel as a case study on the solution


The Moxie Hotel is part of a new urban district in Edinburgh named New Fountainbridge. It was developed primarily using CLT by adopting sustainable materials and combining them with modern methods of construction.


BE-ST took industry on a learning journey on CLT inside a real living example of it in use. By taking delegates on a learning journey of the Moxy Hotel development we demonstrated how CLT can harness its environmental properties to cut carbon emissions and make the built environment perform for us rather than against us. This also gave members of the built environment the opportunity to see and hear about the overall construction experience for themselves. 

CLT is a massive timber component. It is a large slab of timber which is made up of lamellas laid cross dimensionally. It provides the opportunity for timber to stretch its capabilities in terms of strength and capacity so it can build much larger structures with much larger spans.


Trees are the most powerful tool in removing carbon dioxide from our atmosphere. They store captured carbon inside once cut down and used for building, instead of releasing those gases back into the atmosphere when dying.

Using timber construction products such as mass timber and cross laminated timber which act as carbon sinks can change the model of how we build and make the built environment perform to our benefit.

The impact behind the hotel


Construction productivity has stagnated. There's a necessity to build more and more quickly particularly in urban environments due to population increases. As mass timber uses offsite manufacturing, it helps us build quicker.


The Moxie Hotel acted as proof of that.


The first phase of the project managed to construct CLT structured bedrooms in approximately sixteen working weeks - the best output up to that point for Mclaughlin and Harvey.


Use of CLT also has major environmental benefits each meter cubed of CLT locks in 676 kilograms of CO2.


A 200 bedroom Moxo hotel has approximately 2000 meters cubed of CLT which works at 1.3 million kilograms of CO2 locked in. That's the equivalent of 883 return plane journeys from Munich to New York or the running emissions of 767 cars for a year.


of CLT



kg of CO2 locked in

Homegrown timber

Building more sustainably is a priority for the built environment and we see the commercialisation of UK mass timber products that can be homegrown and manufactured in Scotland as a pivotal part of this.

Cross Laminated Timber CLT Panels