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Technical Performance

Wood-frame construction has many positive technical features:

• Increased thermal performance leading to lower heating / cooling costs. Compared to building techniques that rely solely on uninsulated heavy masonry construction (stone, brick, block or concrete), typical wood-frame construction is about fi ve times as energy efficient.

• Low environmental effect: compared to other structural materials, wood has relatively little impact on energy consumption, air and water pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.

• High strength-to-weight ratio: Wood frame construction is light in weight but can be designed to meet the most severe conditions like the extreme forces of seismic events and hurricanes or typhoons (for example, modern wood construction performed exceptionally well in the 1994 Kobe, Japan earthquake). Wood
construction is much lighter than concrete/masonry construction. This means hybrid construction
can allow more living area for a given foundation capacity.

• Sound transmission properties: The control of airborne and impact sound is an important building design consideration, especially for multi-unit residential buildings. For all building materials and methods, care is required to ensure desired sound control is attained. Satisfactory levels of sound transmission can be
easily met with wood-frame construction and is not complicated by its hybrid combination with concrete/masonry.