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Mass Timber Today Podcast Episode 13: Michael Suljak Discusses Mass Timber and Eastern Construction

June 17, 2024

DIALOG’s Craig Applegath, Partner and Architect, and Dr. Anne Koven, Director, Mass Timber Institute, are hosts of Mass Timber Institute’s podcast Mass Timber Today, where they sit down with guests to examine the intersection between engineering, construction, design, and forestry.

Episode 13 | Michael Suljak Discusses Mass Timber and Eastern Construction

In the latest episode of Mass Timber Today, Michael Suljak, Vice President of Strategic Development at Eastern Construction, sat down with Craig Applegath to share his journey into the mass timber sector and the benefits and challenges of building with mass timber.

Michael highlights the beauty and satisfaction of working with mass timber, the need for coordination and collaboration among trades, and the importance of the early involvement of fabricators and constructors in the design process. He also discusses the speed and cleanliness of mass timber construction, the premium cost associated with it, and the motivations of owners in choosing mass timber. Michael concludes by mentioning the potential for hybrid solutions in the future of mass timber.

The conversation explores the challenges and opportunities of using mass timber in construction, highlighting the need for sustainable practices, the high costs of insurance during construction, the importance of early collaboration with mass timber suppliers, and the shortage of experienced professionals in the industry. Michael and Craig also touch on the economic benefits of mass timber, its impact on urban living, and the potential for hybrid structures combining mass timber with steel and concrete.

Listen to the episode: 

About Mass Timber Today

Created by the Mass Timber Institute at the University of Toronto’s John H. Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, the Mass Timber Today podcast series explores the opportunities and challenges of sustainable mass timber construction.

One-on-one interviews are conducted by hosts, Craig Applegath and Dr. Anne Koven. Craig Applegath is a Founding Partner at DIALOG; and Anne is the co-founder and Director of the Mass Timber Institute, an Honourary Registered Professional Forester. Craig and Anne sit down with guests to explore their insights about mass timber technology. The podcast aims to be a platform for a conversation amongst foresters, architects, engineers, builders, Indigenous community members, and developers.