On Saturday November 29th, the successful transportation and installation of the world’s first heavy traffic road bridge made from Accoya wood took place. The bridge, located in Sneek in the Netherlands, is the first wooden bridge in the world that can support the heaviest load class of 60 tons. An official opening ceremony and celebration is planned for April 15, 2009.

Spanning 105 feet and rising more than 50 feet in the air, the structure will serve as a grand entrance to the city of Sneek. The €3.5 million bridge was commissioned after a 2005 design competition, and is designed by OAK Architects (a collaboration between Achterbosch Architectuur and Onix architects) and constructed by German firm Schaffitzel Holzindustrie.

Visit the website of Achterbosch Architectuur – here.

Visit the website of Onix architects – here.

See more photos of Akkerwinde bridge on Flickr – here and here.

From Titan Wood:

When designing their masterpiece, OAK Architects specified Accoya® wood because of its many benefits, including high strength to weight ratio, enhanced durability and dimensional stability, non-toxicity and aesthetics.  The wood used in the bridge’s dramatic design not only makes it look impressive but performs also the important function of bearing the traffic load.

Accoya® wood, which is produced only from source-certified sustainable species, including FSC, was specified after a thorough testing and verification process. Project Manager, Sieds Hoitinga, said, “Several independent European research institutes were contracted to test Accoya® wood’s suitability for this project.  After rigorous testing, we found that its dimensional stability and incredible durability put it head and shoulders above other species and showed that it is suitable for laminating in large sections measuring 1080 x 1400 mm.  Accoya® wood also has superior UV resistance, is non-toxic and made from sustainably grown timber and these things were also considerations”.

Wood, such as Accoya®, naturally sequesters carbon, helping to combat the effects of global warming. Due to its extended usable-life, Accoya® wood sequesters carbon for much longer than ordinary wood species, helping architects and builders to minimize the carbon footprint of their projects.

Akkerwinde, as the wooden bridge is known, represents a milestone, not only for Titan Wood but also for the international building and civil engineering community as a whole. Finlay Morrison, CEO of Titan Wood, said, “Accoya® wood represents a new era in building technology. We are taking a traditional building material and improving it, which allows it to be used in new and innovative ways. Accoya® wood, a green product through and through, allows builders and architects to think out of the box, while at the same time doing their part for the environment.”