Timber Exhibition Hall, Johor, Malaysia

Timber Exhibition Hall, Johor, Malaysia

Type of works: supplied Rotafix thixotropic epoxy adhesive.

In order to promote the use of indigenous hardwoods in construction in Malaysia the Malaysian Timber Industry Board (MTIB) commissioned a large-scale timber structure in Johor, designed by a local architect.

The building is an exhibition hall with a floor area of 4,686m2 and the form of the building is defined by three shell-shaped halls each comprised of 39 glue-laminated arches. Each arch is constructed from seven glue-laminated Keruing (Diptercarpaceae) elements connected by bonded-in steel rods using Rotafix thixotropic epoxy adhesive.

The structure is supported on a raised concrete foundation and the moment-resisting framework is clad in 12mm Malaysian marine ply attached to rolled zinc sheet onto which is fixed Belian (Eusideroxylon zwageri) shingles from Sarawak. Glue-laminated timber (glulam) was manufactured close to the construction site using PRF adhesive and the glulam elements were assembled partially in the factory and partially on site using double-ended galvanised steel rods with 15mm solid steel plate separators.

The bonded-in construction technique allowed connections to be hidden and assembly to proceed rapidly on site. The paper describes all aspects of the construction process in conditions of high humidity and rainfall and temperatures reaching 37ºC. The structure has been instrumented at the joints in order to continuously assess temperature and any movement in the completed building and initial results of this assessment are reported.

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