Fire retardant in focus as architects favour wooden facades
As the go-to department for non-standard solutions, Södra Projects is leading the way in fire-retardant treatments for wood to cater to architects who increasingly favour wooden facades for buildings.
“It is a growing market in Europe and we have been working on an individual approach to fire retardancy for the past three years,” says project manager Lars Broström. “There are an increasing number of tall building made from wood, due in part to the rise in CLT, in which Södra is also engaged. If architects specify wood for the structure they are proud of it, and a wooden facade is a good way to proclaim the nature of the building.”
There are European regulations relating to fire retardants but Sweden has taken them to a higher level. “We believe that our more stringent standards will become the benchmark,” says Broström. “Many treatments are out there but they are not certified according to EU regulations. We work with smaller planing mills and specialist treatment companies to ensure we have the best product but can also be flexible to offer the dimensions which for the large suppliers are not viable.”
Södra treats spruce and pine from its members’ forests plus western red cedar, Siberian larch, ash, aspen and oak. It also works with plywood and Thermowood.
“At the moment our focus is Scandinavia but a strong market in the rest of Europe beckons,” says Broström.