Adohi Hall, a 708-bed student housing complex at the University of Arkansas, demonstrates a pioneering use of cross-laminated timber (CLT) and an innovative approach to live-learn communities, with embedded arts and academic spaces. Completed in August 2019, it is the largest mass timber building to date (202,000 sq ft), and the first large-scale mass timber university housing in the US, supporting the economic potential of Arkansas’ burgeoning timber industry. The significant use of wood as the main structural material takes advantage of the carbon sequestration potential of this low embodied energy, renewable resource.
The CLT floor slabs and glulam structural frame are sustainably-sourced spruce-pine-fir. The typical room modules allow for cost-effective layout of modular CLT panels and glulam framework, and the massing maximizes the building height permitted in Type IIIB construction. Locally harvested Arkansas cypress is used as a finish material throughout the building. Salvaged wood is preserved and incorporated into custom furniture. Conceived as a 'cabin in the woods', Adohi is a serpentine band of rooms framed in CLT and clad in light metal siding floating above three landscaped courtyards. Evoking the ecology of the Arkansas Ozarks, a path descends the length of the site, passing under the student rooms through a landscape of trees, lawns, and terraces. The warmth of structural wood ceilings and columns are apparent in student rooms and ground floor common spaces. The name of the new complex - “Adohi,” Cherokee for “coming into the forest” - recognizes the enduring importance of wood and sustainable forestry to the region.