A number of secularists have accused AiG of lying about the size of the Ark we are building south of Cincinnati, stating that it is not the largest wooden structure, as they (wrongly) think we are claiming. You see, we have never stated that it will be the world’s largest wooden structure. The Ark is made of wood, but it’s what is called a “timber frame” structure.
According to TimberFrame.org, “Timber framing is a distinctive style of building construction where heavy timbers are used to frame the structure instead of more slender dimensional lumber (for example, 2”x6”). . . . One of the most defining elements of timber frame is its unique joints. Heavy timber is joined together via mortise and tenon then secured with wooden pegs.” The Ark is a true timber-frame construction, using heavy timbers, mortise and tenon joints, and so on.
The research conducted by the leading timber frame mill in America, Colorado Timberframe, has shown that the Ark is the largest timber-frame construction—not the largest wooden structure. The front page of the mill’s website declares that they “teamed up with Ark Encounter to create a life-size recreation of Noah’s Ark” and that this project will be the “world’s largest timber-frame structure.”
Now that you have this background, let me give you an example of another secularist making an accusation, who does not understand what is meant by a timber-frame structure.
Here’s an example of this claim:
Here is a photo of the structure the claim above is referring to. Now compare it to the photos of the Ark above. You can see the big difference!
The Ark is built using heavy timbers, with mortise and tenon joints. The other structure is a wooden building but not a timber-frame structure. The building in the picture is the Tillamook Air Museum in Oregon. It’s classed as the “largest free-standing, clear-span wooden structure in the world.” And no doubt it is. The Ark, though, is of a timber-frame construction, which is a very different type of wooden structure.
Sometimes, the media and some websites seem to misunderstand the type of structure the Ark is. For example, this article lists our Ark as one of the must-see architecture projects of 2016 (and the Ark certainly will be an architectural marvel!), but it says we’ll be the “biggest wooden structure in the US.” Again, the Ark will be the largest timber-frame structure in the world when it’s finished. However, we are thrilled to be mentioned in this must-see list—and it is true that the Ark will be an architectural and engineering wonder. Some people have said that they believe it will be one of the great new wonders of the modern world.
You will want to come and visit the world’s largest timber-frame structure and its 132 exceptional exhibit bays inside the Ark. You can learn more about the Ark Encounter, opening July 7 in Williamstown, Kentucky, and obtain your tickets online at ArkEncounter.com.
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,
This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.