FII India has now completed work on its first commercial demonstration project in India. Kapur Villa is located in a pristine and picturesque reserve forest with the backdrop of snow clad peaks perched at an altitude of 7,500 feet in Himachal Pradesh, India. The 1,970 square foot private residence features extensive use of wood species from B.C. in structural and interior and exterior finishing applications.
Wood was selected for key structural elements of the building because of characteristics that offer advantages over concrete, masonry and steel – specifically, wood’s favourable strength to weight ratio and ability to provide load paths for earthquake forces via numerous connections to walls, floors and the roof. The wood features in the design are complemented by another natural material, local stone, which is used for the external walls of the structure.
To meet the owner’s specifications for large, open spaces, the design utilized large spans of solid wood as the main feature. Post & beam construction was the chosen solution, with long-length timber coupled with custom-made steel fasteners, brackets and plates to tie the major components together.
For the structural, vertical and horizontal load-bearing components, including the roof trusses, pulins and joists, Douglas fir from B.C. was selected for its unique strength and stiffness, and its availability in the required widths and lengths… Wood from B.C. was also selected for doors, windows, furniture and millwork to align with the home’s overall aesthetics. Douglas fir was chosen due to its availability in clear grade. In addition, the wood’s colour and grain complemented the Douglas fir structural components. This species was also specified for rustic internal flooring throughout the house and outdoor deck and posts. As an added feature, two triangular Douglas fir skylights, bring abundant natural light into the open space, bathing the extensive wooden surfaces and creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The result is an excellent combination of colour and texture, which contrasts impressively with the 18” thick stone walls.
A wonderful addition to the home is the 16-foot-long dining table, which is the centrepiece of the living/family room. Constructed with B.C. spruce-pine-fir 2x6s, the table features structural grade boards cross-cut into four-foot lengths and finger-jointed to ensure a straight and true table top at an affordable price. The table was finished with a transparent coating.
As FII India’s market development efforts in India continue through high-profile demonstration projects such as Kapur Villa, builders and designers are becoming more familiar with the characteristics offered by Canadian wood species, including sustainability, long-term performance, multipurpose applications, easier manufacturing ability, and the assurance of quality.