The Urbach Tower is a unique wood structure. The design of the tower by ICD Stuttgart emerges from a new self-shaping process of the curved wood components. This pioneering development constitutes a paradigm shift in timber manufacturing from elaborate and energy-intensive mechanical forming processes that require heavy machinery to a process where the material shapes entirely by itself.
This shape change is only driven by the wood’s characteristic shrinking during a decrease of moisture content. Components for the 14 m tall tower are designed and manufactured in a flat state and transform autonomously into the final predicted curved shapes during the industry-standard technical drying. This opens up new and unexpected architectural possibilities for wood structures, using a sustainable, renewable, and locally sourced building material.
The Urbach Tower is the first wood structure made from self-shaped components. It serves as a landmark building for the City of Urbach’s contribution to the Remstal Gartenschau 2019.
Design and info © ICD Stuttgart
Images © ICD Stuttgart and Empa