School projects in Berlin with prefabricated wooden modules
As a part of Berlin’s school construction offensive, 32 wooden schools were commissioned to be built. The reduction of the construction time to less than half has convinced the Berlin Senate Administration of the use of innovative and sustainable timber modular construction methods. The module structures were built with 8-metre long GLVL beams (made of Kerto® LVL S-beam).
The modular school projects in Berlin were built by the Austrian prefabrication constructor Kaufmann Bausysteme (KBS). To keep construction time short, the three-storey school buildings were constructed from prefabricated volumetric modules. The assembly of the modules took place in Berlin. Due to the short distance to the construction site, the transport was efficient and avoided unnecessary costs. Every classroom is composed of 2–3 modules. The modules were built using CLT load-bearing walls. Two Kerto GLVL beams carry the loads to the walls of modules, allowing a column-free floor plan to be used. The span of these 8-m long beams could not be realised with glulam.
Strong Kerto GLVL beams
Sebastian Hagspiel, Project Manager from Kaufmann Bausysteme, describes the material selection of the GLVL beams as follows: "We are wood builders, not steel builders. Therefore, steel beams were out of the question for us and a stronger alternative to glulam had to be found. These requirements could only be solved by using a material that does not have any weak points such as knots in the cross-sections. In the end, only laminated veneer lumber (LVL) could meet this requirement. There were two materials that came into question: hardwood LVL made of beech and softwood LVL made of coniferous wood."