The influential Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) has officially declared Norway's Mjøstårnet as the new world's tallest timber building. The mixed-use building reaches a total height of 85.4 m (280 ft).

Its height may not be all that impressive compared to the average non-timber skyscraper, but Mjøstårnet represents a genuine milestone in sustainable construction. To put it into perspective, the tallest timber tower in Australia, 25 King, reaches just 45 m (147 ft) and former record holder Brock Commons reaches 53 m (174 ft).

Mjøstårnet was actually planned to rise to a height of 81 m (265 ft), however in the end, the team decided to increase this by 4.4 m (14.5 ft), with property developer Arthur Buchardt of AB Invest stating "as we're going to build the world's tallest timber building in Brumunddal, why not make it as tall as possible?" The change required that the firm alter the shape of the wooden beams at the top of the building from rectangular to rounded.

"The force of the wind at the top is moderated by the lower part of the building, and there must be agreement between the two," says Rune Abrahamsen, director of Moelven Limtre, which was in charge of the build. "By rounding off the edges of the beams, we managed to reach 85.4 m [280 ft]. This principle is known from flag poles, which are round to reduce wind strength."

Mjøstårnet comprises a total of 18 floors and over 11,300 sq m (121,632 sq ft) of floorspace. Its interior includes residential units, a hotel, restaurant, offices, and a swimming pool.

The building is located in Brumunddal, an area of Norway known for its forestry and wood processing industry and is situated on the edge of the country's largest lake. It consists of glulam (glue laminated timber) columns, beams and diagonals, with CLT (cross-laminated timber) used for the elevator shafts, stairs, and floor slabs.

Preliminary construction work on the project began in April, 2017, and it officially opened on March 15.

Sources: Moelvyn, CTBUH

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