As the broader interest continues to grow by developers, builders and design professionals in the mid-rise timber building construction, the frame and truss sector continues its activities to ‘build capacity to supply’ into this new market opportunity.

Central to assisting this process, is the Frame & Truss Sector Mid-Rise Market Implementation Group, or the MIG as it is more simply known. This FTMA Australia initiative is funded by FTMA, EWPPA, ATIF, Pryda, MiTek and Multinail with matching commonwealth government funds through an industry funded FWPA project. The MIG also includes seventeen very enthusiastic and innovative frame and truss manufacturers nationally, who are keen to further their activities in the mid-rise timber framed construction area.

Project: Oxford Apartments       Location: Williams Landing       Architect: DKO      Builder: Figurehead      F&T Supplier: Timbertruss

The overall project is being managed by Wood Products Victoria, and program manager Dr Alastair Woodard recently presented on the program’s activities to a very interested audience at Timber Queensland conference in April; discussing the new mid-rise market opportunity for lightweight construction, the system approaches to be provided by the F&T sector, and overviewing the activities of the MIG project in assisting to build F&T sector capacity.

The Mid-Rise F&T MIG meets every two months in Melbourne, formally coming together to collectively discuss potential mid-rise projects, as well as current market and product/application technical related matters. Recent discussions have included: optimised floor cassette and prefabricated wall approaches, acoustic and fire solutions to suit off-site prefabricated construction, anticipated future timber supply, and approaches to engineering calculation of mid-rise buildings: wall width impacts, vertical movement, seismic design, crushing of wall plates, bracing panel capacities, and building tie-downs and connection amongst other topics.

Amongst its varied activities, the MIG is currently working on a simplified mid-rise wall quoting tool for timber buildings above three storeys to assist involved F&T manufacturers in providing initial quotes for potential future projects. It has also been discussing the future training priorities needed for mid-rise timber buildings right along the design-construction chain and determining what courses currently exist and what courses might need to be developed to service this future market.

The Mid-Rise MIG project has been progressing beyond expectation, allowing participating companies to closely collaborate in finding practical, workable and economic solutions to meeting these market’s needs, whilst at the same time building the confidence to deliver.

The FTMA Board is particularly pleased with the project and its progress and has recently asked WPV to prepare a brief for an extension to the program beyond its current October 2018 end date.

There is still much to be done to assist the F&T sector in reaching its full operational capacity, but the drive, vision and collaborative enthusiasm by all participants is definitely still strong.

If you want to know more about the Frame & Truss Sector Mid-Rise Market Implementation Group, or would like to become involved in its activities, please contact Kersten via