Metsä Wood reveals its new and innovative Plan B concept

What if Colosseum was made of wood – Plan B concept shows how

Published: 16/04/2015 15:35

Whatever steel and concrete can do, wood can too, proves Metsä Wood’s new Plan B concept. Nordic premium wood is the best renewable raw material in the world. Metsä Wood knows from experience that when used right, wood saves money, time and nature. Plan B explores in detail how famous architectural buildings such as Colosseum could be constructed of wood.


Metsä Wood, a Finnish quality wood products supplier has created a surprising concept Plan B which demonstrates the benefits of using wood in constructions. It is not only a highly aesthetic and sustainable option but also efficient, fast to construct and enables light structures. Wood is also a more fireproof material than ordinary perceived.

“We’re not saying that everything should be built of wood, but the construction world needs a Plan B. Wood should always be considered as a serious option in everything from structures to interiors. Combining different building materials is often the best option. Our premium-quality wood products are made for all kinds of demanding needs of our construction, industrial and distribution partners”, says Esa Kaikkonen, Executive Vice President of Metsä Wood.

Plan B challenges widely spread preconceptions and explores the various possibilities of wood construction. As a part of the project, Metsä Wood in collaboration with architects and construction engineers, shows in detail how to replace other building materials with wood and how to use it in different forms – whether the building is circular in shape or complex in some other way such as requiring long spans or heavy load bearing properties.

The historical and highly-challenging Colosseum was chosen as the first case by architects and Metsä Wood’s customers. The concept plan for a wooden Colosseum is done by Finnish architect Antti Laiho from Helin & co. Architects, together with Metsä Wood’s structural engineers.

The challenge was to redesign a recognizable yet modern version of the original building, using wood as the main material. Emphasis was on reducing construction time, material waste and costs using prefabricated modular elements. Metsä Wood’s Kerto® LVL (laminated veneer lumber) was ideal for the beams and columns. Kerto® provides incredible load-bearing strength thanks to its many tightly glued 3 mm veneer layers.

“At 190 meters by 158 meters, the Colosseum is a huge building – almost three times the size of an average sports arena. Initially, I thought that wooden construction to such extent wouldn’t be feasible in reality. As the project proceeded, I changed my mind. It would not only be possible – but easy as well”, says the architect Antti Laiho.

The Plan B concept will be featured on Metsä Wood’s website. Besides the Colosseum, more wooden redesigns of world-known architectural iconic buildings will be designed and published during the year 2015. References of buildings constructed by Metsä Wood’s clients can also be found on the website.

For more information, please contact:
Susanna Siira, Marketing and Communications Manager, Metsä Wood, firstname.lastname[at], t. +358 400 606 082