Sweden’s very first school completely built with cross-laminated timber

Herrestaskolan in Barkarbystaden, just north of Stockholm, was designed to be at the frontier of sustainable construction through innovative wood construction techniques and a solar power system making the building energy self-sufficient.

Herrestaskolan, Developed by: Liljewall Arkitekter & Järfälla Municipality

Herrestaskolan was completed in 2016, and from the beginning of design phase the ambition was to become a gold-standard example of a low carbon building. The 8,200m2 school has been built completely in wood using 3,100m3 of solid timber. Both CLT and glulam have been used to construct everything from the sports hall to the library and canteen.


The school has become a fully integrated part of Barkaby, as its facilities including its outdoor activity park are open for the whole town to use outside of school hours. It has now become a beacon for wooden schools, with Herrestaskolan a centre point for architect lectures; even the school’s pupils are even doing work on wood construction.


Herrestaskolan demonstrates how public procurement can drive sustainable change, as the municipality requested that the archtiects come up with a design purely from wood. The meet the challenge, the architects collaborated with experienced engineers in the UK and local consultants to design a building fit for the 21st century.


The timber construction creates a positive learning environment for Bakaby’s junior citizens, and protects their future by storing 2,500 tons of CO2eq, with the building certified to the highest Swedish Miljöbyggnad certification standard. With gulam beams over 30 meters long and CLT boards at 16 meters high, Herrestaskolan has pushed boundaries and pioneered public-driven wood construction in Sweden.


  • innovation benifits icon: innovation benifits icon
  • innovation benifits title: INNOVATION
  • innovation benifits text: To create wooden elements to the large dimensions that Herreastaskolan required, the factory had to expand with a new room, and installations were put on large springs to avoid the vibrations from transporting through the wooden slabs.
  • partnership benifits icon: partnership benifits icon
  • partnership benifits title: ENVIRONMENT
  • partnership benifits text: Custom-produced wooden elements results resulted in greatly reduced waste streams and transport requirements during the construction process.
  • economic benifits Icon: economic benifits Icon
  • economic benifits title: PARTNERSHIPS
  • economic benifits text: To alleviate concerns on sound, fire and moisture, the project brought together universities with both local and international consultants and engineers, developing new knowledge for use in future projects.

The Nordic Wood in Construction Secretariat is hosted by EIT Climate-KIC

The project is funded by the Nordic Council of Ministers.