Cordwood Building — “Merging a Traditional Building Method with Commercial Construction Technology”

Claire Halpin and Sarah Kramer

The Collected Papers of the Continental Cordwood Conference and Cordwood Building (second edition)



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The use of wood masonry is a key design element of the Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership. As a highly collaborative, democratic, and sustainable method of building, it resonates with the center’s social justice mission.

In using this method at an institutional scale, however, the Studio was presented with interesting logistical and technical challenges. By merging traditional cordwood masonry practices with contemporary design and building technologies, the Studio was able to explore new and different ways to incorporate the benefits of this traditional method.

Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership Kalamazoo, MI, 2014