Siemens Campus Erlangen: The Austrian company Cree GmbH is providing the expertise behind the erection of the second module using the timber-hybrid construction system

Siemens Campus Erlangen: The Austrian company Cree GmbH is providing the expertise behind the erection of the second module using the timber-hybrid construction system

Cree’s LCT (LifeCycle Tower) system celebrates a new milestone: Bremen-based Zech Group GmbH has been working with Cree GmbH for almost a year on Germany’s largest construction project using the sustainable timber-hybrid construction system.

Munich-based technology group Siemens have commissioned ZECH Building GmbH, a subsidiary of Bremen-based Zech Group GmbH, to act as general contractors for the construction of the second module of the Siemens Campus Erlangen. This is a special project because the four office buildings and new central reception building – covering some 80,000 square metres – will be erected using Cree’s timber-hybrid construction system, and the whole project will be supported by model-based work processes (BIM – Building Information Modelling). This underscores Siemens’ commitment to building a sustainably designed campus while reaping all the benefits offered by this particular construction method.

Cree’s timber-hybrid construction system
A small number of structural elements, such as those used to create fire compartments and those in escape routes, are prefabricated from reinforced concrete and used for bracing. However, the majority of the construction, such as the floor and roof slabs, the load-bearing façade columns and also the building envelope, are constructed from industrially prefabricated, standardised hybrid elements with a high proportion of structural and glulam timber.

The BIM process creates a “digital twin” of the buildings before construction begins. Although this requires an intensive planning phase, it also means that the components can be standardised to a great extent. For example, this reduces the transportation of carcasses to the construction site by close to 68%, and the workforce is less than three quarters of that needed on a traditional construction site. The use of the Cree system to build Module 2 offsets the CO2 consumption of more than 2,500 people and highlights Siemens’ consistent approach to becoming a carbon-neutral business.

Cree’s CEO Hubert Rhomberg comments: “We are proud that this has been made possible by the wealth of expertise that we have built up over the years. Combined with Zech’s operational capabilities, we form a powerful team that will give a tremendous boost to hybrid-timber construction in Germany.” Olaf Demuth, CEO of Zech Bau Holding, adds: “We would like to thank Siemens for the trust it has placed in us as general contractors. We are convinced that the innovative, sustainable timber-hybrid construction system – with all its advantages, such as saving time, money and resources – will allow us to build a compound that is truly fit for the future.”

Construction is set to begin in October 2019.

About Cree GmbH
Cree’s name is borrowed from one of North America’s First Nations, who lived in close harmony with nature. It also stands for Creative Resource & Energy Efficiency, and as part of Rhomberg Ventures – Cree’s owners along with the Zech Group – it is the natural result of four generations of construction experience. Founded in 2010, the company aims to use innovative strategies to provide inspiration and ideas for improving the way we live and work with nature. New approaches focus on reducing the use of resources and energy over the whole lifecycle of buildings, taking into account the need to combat climate change. The timber construction specialists have a vision of a hybrid-timber high-rise building with up to 30 floors and 100 metres tall. It uses a minimum of resources and energy throughout its lifecycle, from planning to dismantling. This is achieved through the LCT (LifeCycle Tower) system. With the LCT ONE office tower in Dornbirn and the Illwerke Zentrum Montafon in Vandans, Cree has already demonstrated twice over that the concept works under real-life conditions. The system was first implemented for residential construction in a combined commercial and residential building in Memmingen, Bavaria.

About the Zech Group GmbH
The Zech Group GmbH is a strategic management holding company incorporating six divisions, each with their own operational management companies. The sheer variety of services offered makes the company an expert partner in the following sectors: construction, real estate, hotel, environment/technology, industry and international & consulting. As a broad-based, diversified group of companies, it concentrates on the real estate value chain. As a medium-sized, owner-managed company, the Zech Group is able to rapidly seize opportunities and adapt its structures to meet the demands of the market.

Picture credits:

Press contact
Cree GmbH
Mariahilfstr. 29, A-6900 Bregenz
Mag. Matthias Moosbrugger
Head of Marketing & Communication
T. +43 5574 403-2195