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Tacoma Train Station Using Cross-Laminated Timber

The new Amtrak station in Tacoma

Portland recently approved the country's first all-wood high-rise, but cross-laminated timber is being used in a wide variety of construction projects. In Tacoma, the nation's first train station using CLT is nearing completion.

CLT consists of three, five or seven layers of lumber oriented at right angles to one another and then glued to form structural panels with exceptional strength.

The new Amtrak station, built by Garco and scheduled to open this fall, is part of the $149.9M Point Defiance Bypass high-speed rail project, which will reroute passenger train traffic through DuPont, Lakewood and Tacoma, creating a faster travel route.

The CLT, provided by SmartLam, will be used as a structural roof deck. It will be exposed on the underside (a 20-foot ceiling) and supported by exposed Douglas fir glulam (glued laminated timber) beams. According to SmartLam, CLT was chosen for the project because of its increased speed of installation, visual aesthetic and competitive pricing compared to other methods of construction.