We welcome Tenure-track faculty at accredited Architecture schools throughout the US to apply for an intensive 3-day workshop geared towards equipping faculty interested in teaching Mass Timber design.

Workshop will be led by Tom S. Chung FAIA, Principal Leers Weinzapfel Associates and Professor of Practice in Architecture at Auburn University, recipient of the inaugural ACSA Timber Education Prize in 2022 and Dr. Peggi Clouston, Professor of Wood Mechanics and Timber Engineering at UMass Amherst.

With the goal of equipping you with a holistic understanding of Mass Timber design in academia, design profession and wood industry, the workshop will include lectures, discussions and hands on participation in timber education, design and research along with travel throughout the region visiting industry and professional partners critical to the Mass Timber development: Sustainable Forestry and Harvesting, Lumber production, CLT fabrication and processing, leading architect, engineer and developer team, construction site and built precedents visits.

The workshop is all-inclusive for participants. Travel expenses, lodging and meals are funded through a generous sponsorship from the Softwood Lumber Board. This opportunity is only for architecture faculty in accredited programs in US universities. Preference will be given to junior faculty that show keen interest, commitment as well as support from their respective school heads to incorporate the knowledge gain through the workshop into their own courses in Mass Timber design.


Join us for 3 days in Amherst, MA and travel throughout the New England region.

Workshop dates have been confirmed. Order of events subject to adjustment.

Sunday, June 25

Arrive at Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) for those arriving by air.

6:00 pm: Pickup attendees by Van and depart to UMass for drive to UMass Amherst (2 hr drive from Boston).

8:00 pm: Arrive at UMass Amherst and Check-in at UMass Amherst Hotel


Monday, June 26: 9am–6pm

Locations: John W. Olver Design Building

8:00 am: Breakfast Available

8:30 am: Welcome and Introductions

Sponsor Welcome remarks – Reed Kelterborn, SLB

Workshop Introductions – Tom S. Chung FAIA and Dr. Peggi Clouston

9:00 am: Session 1: (2hrs) Essentials of Mass Timber Architecture, Tom S. Chung

History, key concepts-sustainability, prefabrication/construction, biophilia, key precedents and architectural strategies, possibilities for academic design explorations and professional practice applications

11:00 am: Tour of Olver Design Building, Department of Architecture Faculty

Venue Host Welcome remarks – Caryn Brause FAIA, Associate Professor, Department of Architecture, UMass Amherst

12:00 pm: Lunch break

1:00 pm: Session 2: (2.5 hrs) Wood Basics, Peggi Clouston and Alex Schreyer

Basics of wood understanding and its cellular structure and implications in engineering, wood structural engineering basics and advanced applications, wood testing and research

3:30 pm: Break

4:00 pm: Session 3: (1.5 hrs) Case Study: Olver Design Building, Tom Chung, Alex Schreyer, Peggi Clouston

Design concept, structure and architecture integration and iterative design process, pre-construction and design assist, procurement and constructability, construction logistics, stage by stage review of construction and discussion of advantages along with lessons learned.

6:00 pm: Dinner


Tuesday, June 27: 8am–6pm

Locations: John W. Olver Design Building & Travel to New Haven

Morning: at Olver Design Building

7:30 am: Breakfast

8:00 am: Session 4: (45 min) Nordic Structures, Chris Carbone

9:00 am: Session 5: (1 hr) Wood Research and Testing Demonstration, Peggi Clouston

10:00 am: Session 6: (1 hr) Case Study_Adohi Hall Student Residences, Tom Chung & Ashley Rao

Based on Adohi Hall case study: supplemental information on design concept, structure and architecture integration and iterative design process, pre-construction and design assist, procurement and constructability, construction logistics, stage by stage review of construction and discussion of advantages along with lessons learned.

11:00 am: Depart for Shelburne Falls, MA

11:30 am: (1 hr) Timber Harvesting tour w/ NEFF affiliate, Shelburne Falls, MA

12:30 pm: New Haven, CT - Gray Organschi Architecture, Spiritos Properties, Mass Timber Construction & Precedents (brown bag lunch provided)

2:00 pm - 6:00pm: Gray Organschi Architecture, Housing Development under construction – Spiritos Properties

6:00 pm: Dinner in New Haven, CT

7:00pm: Depart for Amherst, MA

8:30 pm: Arrive back at UMass Amherst Hotel


Wednesday, June 28: 7am–3:30pm

Travel to Central MA & New Hampshire

7:00 am: Check Out and Depart for Keene, NH (grab breakfast to go)

8:15 am: (1 hr) Bensonwood Prefabrication Assembly Plant tour, Keene, NH

9:30 am: Depart for Walpole, NH

9:45 am: (1 hr) Bensonwood Robot Drive, Design Assist, Walpole, NH

10:45 am: Depart for Springfield, NH (lunch to go)

12:00 pm: (1 hr) Saw Mill Tour at Durgin and Cromwell, Springfield, NH

1:00 pm: Depart for Littleton, MA

2:30 pm: (1 hr) Sustainable Forestry/ Forest Walk at the New England Forestry Foundation (NEFF), Littleton, MA

3:30 pm: END Workshop, Attendees depart (transportation available to Boston)

4:30 pm: Arrival at Boston Logan International Airport



Main Speakers

Hosted By: Department of Architecture and Building and Construction Technology Program, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Venue Host

Guest Speakers


John W. Olver Design Building, Amherst, MA

Designed by Leers Weinzapfel Associates, the Olver Design Building (completed in 2017) is home to UMass Amherst’s Departments of Architecture, Building and Construction Technology, and Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning. It is a hub for studio courses in Architecture and Landscape Architecture and research laboratories in Building and Construction Technology. Designed as “a building that teaches,” the Design Building features innovative sustainable mechanical and structural systems and an intensive green roof courtyard, all on full display. This LEED Gold-rated is recognized widely for its design and sustainability, receiving the AIA National Honor Award (2023), AIA National Education Design Award (2022) and AIA COTE Top Ten Award (2021).

Wood Testing Laboratory, Amherst, MA

Located in the Olver Design Building, BCT’s Wood Testing Laboratory is an active laboratory for cutting edge wood research and testing. Equipped with a strong floor, overhead crane and a climate chamber, it allows for Dr. Clouston and her team to test an array of ongoing research topics related to structural properties and durability of wood and wood composite materials. It is connected to an exterior work yard and storage and is part of a series of active learning spaces in the building, including the digital fabrication lab, wood shop and landscape technologies lab.

Tree Harvesting, Central/Western MA

Working in coordination with NEFF, Sustainable tree harvesting throughout the region provides forest management, forest health and land owners with source of income that increases the value of their lands and provides incentive to maintain forest lands for continued benefit of our environment.

Gray Organschi Architecture, New Haven, CT

A leading architecture firm in teaching, research and practice of timber design and sustainability, with an in-house fabrication shop, our visit will provide critical insight into potential of mass timber for creative and highly relevant solutions for mass timber in urban development for the 21st century.

Mass Timber Construction Site, New Haven, CT

A visit to a mass timber construction site with architect, developer and contractor will highlight the importance of collaboration among these disciplines in seamlessly translating financing, design, fabrication and construction and challenges faced given the emergent nature of mass timber buildings.

Unity Homes Assembly Line Production, Keene, MA

A subsidiary of Bensonwood, Unity Homes showcases efficiency of assembly line pre-fabrication and production along with passive-house standard building envelope assembly with light frame wood and mass timber components, for greater precision and reduced materials waster in construction.

Bensonwood Timber Fabrications, Walpole, MA

One of few facilities throughout the US equipped with Hundegger Robot Drive, Bensonwood has fabricated the region’s latest and cutting edge mass timber structural components showcasing the precision and versatility of digital fabrication coupled with decades of solid heavy timber works as a leader in Timber fabrication and installation in the Northeast US.

Durgin and Cromwell, Springfield, NH

Technologically advanced sawmill complex, set up to get the most out of each pine log with optimization throughout the mill at every key manufacturing station. Complex includes planer mill, filing room, dry kiln and distribution center. As the key component of many mass timber products, understanding production of lumber in a sustainable way is critical to understanding mass timber.

New England Forestry Foundation, Littleton, MA

NEFF’s Headquarters are located on the 118-acre Prouty Woods, with 5 miles of pristine woodland trails. The forests are managed by NEFF according to their principles of sustainability and multiple use, balancing the valuable resources of wildlife habitat, water quality, recreational use, aesthetic and historical values, with sustainable forest management principles. The Prouty Woods will be a model forest for the many properties owned and protected by NEFF, serving as a key property helping in the conservation of thousands more acres of open land.


Q: Is the Timber Faculty Workshop open to any architect, or only to architecture school tenure-track faculty?
A: Thank you for your interest in the Timber Faculty Workshop. The workshop is only for current faculty with preference being for tenure-track faculty.


Q: I will begin a tenure-track faculty position after the Timber Faculty Workshop dates. Am I still eligible to apply for the workshop even though I will not formally be a tenure-track faculty during the workshop dates?
A: Yes, you are eligible. Note that “while preference would be given to tenure-track faculty, all faculty in accredited architecture schools in the US are eligible.”


Questions? Please contact Leers Weinzapfel Associates at:

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