THE WORLD’S TALLEST tree is a sequoia, an American conifer that rises over 150 metres above the ground. That equates to around 30 storeys – or a third of the Empire State Building which, for forty years, was the tallest building in the world. Architect Michael Green is sticking his neck out with a proposal on how it would be technically possible to build a wooden copy of the Empire State Building. ‘Plan B’, as the project is called, is a collaboration with Finnish company Metsä Wood. They have developed a technique where thin strips can be glued together into panels of gigantic proportions. The wooden copy has basically the same structure as the original, with columns reaching over six floors. These are connected together using the glued panels, while steel wires add extra stability.
The Empire State Building is not the only one to have been copied in natural materials. The world’s oldest and most famous concrete building – the Colosseum in Rome – could also be recreated using the same technique, according to Green.«