January 27, 2021

Ramboll scoops Timber Pioneer Award

Ramboll receives the Pioneer Award at the Structural Timber Awards for our contribution to pushing the boundaries of the material in its application to volumetric timber modules, our leading role in the work on the timber office concept, and inspiring social change with regards to mental health with the ‘Talk to Me’ sculpture.

Held on Wednesday 27th January, the online 2020 Structural Timber Award ceremony celebrated the outstanding projects, contractors, engineers, architects, innovators, and pioneers who utilise and push the boundaries of timber.
Shortlisted for two awards, Ramboll is delighted to have once again been awarded the Pioneer Award, having received the same recognition previously in 2015. We were also proud sponsor of the awards and the Project of the Year category, which was won by HESS Timber, Hodder + Partners & BAM Construction for RHS Garden Bridgewater.
Ramboll started adopting mass timber in our designs over 17 years ago and has been an advocate of the material ever since. We have designed and engineered some of the UK’s and world’s largest and tallest timber buildings, developing a deep understanding of the material and striving to ensure timber is considered from the outset.
The judges recognised our recent contribution and commitment to timber design, including revolutionising the way the industry views timber as a viable office building material.
Leading the Stora Enso Timber Office Concept, Ramboll has secured a place for timber as a mainstream material in the office sector. The concept was formed in a way that allows flexibility in design and inherent adaptability in a project lifecycle, bringing clarity to timber design in an office context. By driving this message, it gives greater confidence to the user -from client to contractor - at an earlier stage and promotes a positive perception of the material in the industry.
Ramboll was also instrumental in developing the modular timber product and guide for NuBuild and Swan Homes. The guide provides tools for designers to develop their own projects in modular timber, whilst providing information on the principles of how each module is made, transported and assembled at every stage of the design development. This helps to give greater confidence in the systems, meaning their adoption is more likely and the end product is of high quality.
For Talk to Me, an art installation that supported the charity Time to Change, Ramboll delivered the client ambition of using timber structures to help promote awareness of mental health. The project involved the construction of several 5.5m high sculptures that were installed at Kings Cross Station and had to be delivered and erected within one hour, minimising any disruption to the area. Artist and designer Steuart Padwick commented “Once again Ramboll has come to the rescue with their expertise, professionalism and relaxed, reassuring approach.”
As a pledged ‘Time to Change’ employer, we used our expertise in offsite construction techniques, complex connection detailing and comprehensive timber experience to deliver a thought-provoking structure that raises awareness and inspires change in our industry’s attitude towards mental health.
The Structural Timber Award judges commented: “Ramboll has made a lasting impact on the built environment, current and future carbon emissions, as well as inspiring positive change to the understanding and appreciation of mental health.”
Alan Dowdall, Timber Design Lead at Ramboll said about the award win “Our passion for timber design and sustainable development has led us on this fantastic journey over the last couple of decades. We’ve made a conscious effort in the last few years to invest in sharing knowledge to our industry and use timber design as a means to raise awareness to societal issues, such as mental health. I’m really proud of the Ramboll team and this award is a reflection of the hard effort put in by all. What’s even more exciting is that our industry’s timber renaissance has only just begun and the next decade brings with it a scale of opportunity, intensity and a level of urgency unlike anything we have seen before.”