The drive to reduce the carbon footprint of construction is getting a helping hand from trees. A number of projects, including a 25-story high-rise in Milwaukee, are using mass timber to reduce construction traffic, on-site workers and construction time, by 90%, 75% and 25%, respectively, according to Tim Gokhman of New Land Enterprises, the team behind Milwaukee’s Ascent tower



ilwaukee’s proposed 25-story Ascent tower sounds like a conventional housing project. Scheduled to open in September 2022, It offers 250+ apartments with beautiful views of downtown Milwaukee and Lake Michigan. But one thing sets it apart from other housing towers in the U.S. — it’s supposed to be the world’s tallest timber tower.

Why timber?

Firms working on timber construction believe that compared to typical construction materials like steel and concrete, timber is easier and cheaper to use, and more durable in the long run. The best part: It could benefit the environment.

“Mass timber construction [a method of using timber for construction] requires 90% less construction traffic, 75% fewer workers on-site, and is 25% faster than traditional construction. All of these reductions factor into reduced emissions associated with the construction process,” Tim Gokhman of New Land Enterprises, the team behind the Ascent tower, told NextCity.

While using timber construction to save the environment sounds counterintuitive, an increasing number of timber buildings constructed in the United States in the last few years are proving otherwise.