The mass timber facility is rising in King Township, the site of the University of Toronto’s Koffler Scientific Reserve. For decades the reserve has hosted field researchers working in multiple disciplines with summertime residencies but Robert Davies, director and principal at Montgomery Sisam, designers of the facility, said the various outbuildings were a “motley” assortment that need to be replaced. …The structure of the facility is mass timber, with wood finishing inside, ample insulation “like a down jacket” and then cedar shingles forming a cladding, treated in the Shou Sugi Ban style. That’s a Japanese practice where the surface of the cedar is burned, closing the pores, Davies explained, offering long-term natural preservation without solvents, chemicals or plastics. …One of the worst inventions of mankind, Davies said, was air-conditioning, which replaced natural methods of cooling buildings that had worked for eternity.