Waterside Lodges at Center Parcs Elveden Forest win big at the 2018 Structural Timber Awards with Metsä Wood’s Kerto® LVL

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The winning project of the 2018 Structural Timber Awards ‘Best Retail & Leisure Project’ and ‘Best Use of Solid Wood’ categories were three Waterside Lodges at Center Parcs Elveden Forest. They have all been built using Metsä Wood’s Kerto® LVL (laminated veneer lumber) for fast, light and green construction.

The construction of the Waterside Lodges at Center Parcs Elveden Forest was an ambitious architectural and engineering project. The lodges were designed to complement the woodland landscape to connect the guests with the surrounding natural environment. Wood was a natural choice of building material, which would blend in seamlessly with the natural forest setting.

Metsä Wood’s Kerto® LVL was sufficiently lightweight to achieve the impressive structure, without needing a considerable amount of foundation works. It has a solid bonded structure, which offers incredible strength and dimensional stability, while its high strength-to-weight ratio allows for smaller spacing in mechanical connections.

One of the most challenging elements of the structure was an exposed arch at the front, which leans towards the lake. This needed to withstand biaxial bending and compression, while supporting the roof structure with a large cantilever. Kerto LVL Q-panels were used to create the long span to the first floor deck, which was designed to bear the weight of the column horizontally with a spring support.

Vertical columns were formed with two members spaced to support the first floor’s beams and curved roof beams. Kerto LVL was also used to create a recessed infill detail, closing the gap between the two vertical columns.

The columns, floor beams and support ribs of the curved roof were created using Kerto LVL Q-panel structural members. This allowed for smaller spacing in the doweled circular bending moment connection and better moisture stability.

The bracing of the roof and floor was provided by Kerto LVL Q-panels, which were connected together with 3-dimentional screwing. In this way no steel bracing was required.

Architects Jackson Design Associates created an elegant shape, reminiscent of a boat turned upside-down. The lodges have two levels; the forest-facing side is situated higher, accessed through a wooden bridge on the first floor. The first floor contains three en-suite bedrooms, two of which open onto a deck and balcony facing the lake. The ground floor combines kitchen, living and dining areas opening out on to a terrace on the water’s edge.

Divisional Operations Manager at Cocksedge Building Contractors, Tom Courtney, said: “The project combined a unique architectural approach with challenging structural engineering to great effect. The success of the project demonstrates the technical know-how and expertise of everyone involved. 

“The use of such a versatile and lightweight material as Kerto LVL made the entire build process much more straightforward and faster.”

Paul Kent, Development and Construction Director at Center Parcs, said: “The versatility of [Metsä Wood’s] product has helped to create a unique design feature in this brand new style of accommodation, complementing the nautical theme and lakeside setting.”

The Structural Timber Awards took place at the National Conference Centre, Birmingham, on 10th October 2018. The ceremony, which was attended by hundreds of industry experts and professionals, is an annual event which celebrates excellence in structural timber construction across 20 different categories.

Read more about the project

For more information, please contact:

Viivi Kylämä, Marketing Manager, Metsä Wood
tel: +358 40 820 9850, viivi.kylama@metsagroup.com

For press information, please contact:

Matt Trace, Director, Defero Communications
tel. 07828663988, matt@deferouk.co.uk


Metsä Wood provides competitive and environmentally friendly wood products for construction, industrial customers and distributor partners. We manufacture products from northern wood, a sustainable raw material of premium quality. Our sales in 2017 were EUR 0.5 billion, and we employ about 1,400 people. Metsä Wood is part of Metsä Group.

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