Accoya® marks entrance to Dublin City University
02 Apr 14
Accoya®, the world-leading modified wood manufactured by Accsys Technologies, has been used to create an impressive architectural sculpture that now adorns the entrance to Dublin City University (DCU).
Fifty four imposing posts made from structural glulaminated Accoya were creatively arranged to complete the installation. At its highest point, the sculpture stands 16 metres above ground level, marking the prominent entrance to the twentieth century institution and home to Ireland’s largest arts centre, The Helix.
ZAP Architecture was appointed to lead the sculpture installation project following an international design competition organised by the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland. Pol Gallagher, Creative Director of ZAP Architecture, explained: “The design celebrates the main entrance to DCU in the form of a bold forest of vertical timber elements, broken up by rich green spaces. Our design is about place-making, creating a striking and memorable visual identity for DCU both locally and on the international scene.”
Manufactured using Accsys Technologies’ proprietary acetylation process, Accoya is one of the most advanced modified wood products on the market delivering outstanding levels of performance, stability and class one durability. Exceeding the high-quality and aesthetic attributes of tropical hardwoods, it also boasts excellent environmental credentials by using wood sourced from FSC® certified and sustainable forests as well as being Cradle to Cradle Gold certified.
Dominik Niewerth, Project Engineer at Schaffitzel + Miebach, who provided a consultancy role for the timber works and has worked with glulam Accoya on many projects, added: “The major benefit of Accoya is its ability to withstand exposed conditions and direct weathering. We’re confident of its dimensional stability and durable performance, and were also able to glue the wood and therefore use it for structural elements of the installation.
“The Accoya glulam posts are clamped into the ground, so we’ve been able to complete the whole sculpture without using any steel parts which is a sustainable design. This wouldn’t have been possible with any other type of timber as there would have been far too many concerns about the durability of such an essential structural component.”
With exceptional standards of durability, Accoya is guaranteed for fifty years above ground, and 25 years below ground. Thanks to the revolutionary chemical modifications made during the acetylation process, swelling and shrinkage of Accoya is reduced by more than 75% compared to other wood species, and the wood is virtually rot proof.
Pol added: “This is the first time that ZAP Architecture has worked with Accoya, after it was recommended by Abbey Woods, the official distributor of Accoya in Ireland. The benefits of Accoya have been continually evident throughout the project, and the sustainable integrity of using naturally grown and sustainably harvested, high performance modified wood was a significant factor for all involved”
Phil Roche, Managing Director at Abbey Woods also explained “This is the first landmark structural project using Accoya to be completed in Ireland; the entire project team from start to finish were simply excellent to work with. The reputation of Accoya as the most versatile exterior timber product just keeps growing”