Cross-laminated timber: structural principles

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This revision includes an additional detail for floor supported on glulam beam, as well as various minor amendments.


Cross-laminated timber (CLT) offers opportunities to use timber in taller structures with wider spans where designers would traditionally have used materials such as steel, concrete and masonry by default. As with any new structural material, it is essential that designers understand how to achieve CLT’s potential while respecting its limitations.


This Wood Information Sheet (WIS) is an overview of the subject with signposts to more detailed sources that are listed at the end.

This Wood Information Sheet is also available as part of a series on cross-laminated timber which can be purchased from the TRADA booskshop. As well as this WIS, The complete cross-laminated timber series also contains:

  • WIS 2/3-61: Cross-laminated timber: An introduction for specifiers
  • GD10: Cross-laminated timber - design guide for project feasibility
  • Worked Example: 12 storey building of Cross-laminated timber (Eurocode 5)



  • Typical connection types
  • Supporting engineered timber floors
  • Assembly
  • Shear resistance
  • Shrinkage
  • Fire
  • Vibration
  • Disproportionate collapse

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