Meet the WoodSolutions Advisory Team

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New mid-rise advisory service offers FREE professional advice on any aspect of mid-rise timber buildings

Building design and construction professionals and property developers in Melbourne and Brisbane now have easier access to the benefits of timber framing and massive timber building systems in mid-rise residential projects, through the new WoodSolutions Technical Field Force pilot program.

Go to the mid-rise timber resources page

See the companies sponsoring the program

View and download mid-rise-related Design Guides

Following the recent changes to the National Construction Code, that make it easier to use lightweight and massive timber building systems in mid-rise construction, a pilot advisory program comprising a team of design, engineering, construction and property specialists has been launched by WoodSolutions in Melbourne, complemented by a smaller-scale activity in Brisbane.

With extensive experience in property development, construction, timber engineering and architecture, the WoodSolutions team of Program Development Managers are ideally placed to liaise with development, design and construction professionals, providing generic information and advice on making the most of the cost, time, environmental and other advantages of timber building systems.

Please note: Advice is provided subject to the terms of our Disclaimer

Read on to meet the team....

Gerard Neylan

Lead Program Development Manager
Mid-rise Construction


With more than 35 years’ experience in Melbourne in construction, planning and architecture, Gerry is well known in the Victorian design, construction and property markets.

A qualified town planner, his roles have included identifying new business opportunities, developing and maintaining client relationships, advice and consultation, and coordinating the planning, funding and delivery of many major building and infrastructure projects in both the private and public sectors.

Experience in managing and directing highly regarded architectural firms, senior roles in advisory and management companies, supported by business development roles for national construction companies, enables Gerry to bring a wealth of practical knowledge to every project.

As a member of the WoodSolutions team, Gerry says he is looking forward to “the opportunity to engage with the marketplace on issues such as social responsibility and sustainability and constructing new projects more economically, quickly, quietly and safely.”

You can contact Gerry at Gerard.Neylan@woodsolutions.com.au


Robert Pradolin

Program Advisor
Mid-rise Construction


Robert has been active in the property industry for over 30 years with the last 18 years being with Frasers Property Australia (formally Australand).

During his time as General Manager at Frasers/Australand, Robert was the driving force behind the company’s foray into timber medium-rise construction, resulting with the company building The Green. This was Australia’s first 5 storey timber apartment building built with the use of traditional domestic construction labor. This “domestically built” apartment building delivered significant cost savings and along with Lendlease's Forte Living apartments, were the catalyst to the changes made in May 2016 to the Australian Building Code that allowed a deemed to satisfy provision for timber buildings less than 25 meters in height. As a developer, Robert believes that the use of lightweight timber construction for residential medium rise in the middle ring suburbs is a game changer.

He is currently on the Board of the Property Industry Foundation, and a past Board member of the PCA, HIA, UDIA, Liveable Housing Australia and the Heritage Council of Victoria.

You can contact Robert at Robert.Pradolin@woodsolutions.com.au

Paolo Lavisci

Program Development Manager
Mid-rise Construction


Paolo’s extensive experience in developing and using wood and wood products encompasses advisory and hands-on roles in the design and construction of timber structures, project management, research and product development, teaching and training.

With a Forestry degree in Florence (Italy) and a PhD in Industrial Technologies, Wood at ENSTIB/Université de Nancy (France), Paolo worked in the industry for 7 years before starting an independent timber consulting and design practice. Among the many projects with which he has been involved are the design and specification of multi-storey timber buildings (5, 7, 9 and 12 storeys), developing new models for prefabricated homes and transportable units and the design for cross laminated timber (CLT) manufacturing plants. He also authored a widely-used book on engineering timber structures and funded the development of specific engineering software.

As part of the WoodSolutions team, Paolo sees his biggest challenge to be “changing some mindsets in the mid-rise construction market and helping those with a little pioneering spirit to take advantage of the demonstrated efficiencies and cost savings that timber can provide.”

You can contact Paolo at Paolo.Lavisci@woodsolutions.com.au



Laurence Ritchie

Cost and Program Estimator
Mid-rise Construction


With a Master’s degree in Construction Management (Cost Management major), experience in tier 1 construction, and over a decade working in the property sector, Laurence brings further inter-disciplinary knowledge to the Mid-rise Advisory Program team. Drawing on this wholistic understanding Laurence engages in project evaluation and design optimisation services, ultimately requiring the estimation of construction programs and costs. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for innovation in construction, Laurence sees opportunity for timber systems to change the way we build for the better.  

A member of the Mid-rise Advisory Team since 2017, Laurence has developed an in depth understanding of the possibilities and strengths of timber in construction. He is excited to be involved in the exponential growth of Australian timber construction, and is enthusiastic to support project team in their realisation of their next timber building.

You can contact Laurence at Laurence.Ritchie@woodsolutions.com.au


Stefan Gerber

Program Development Manager
Mid-rise Construction


Combining undergraduate and post graduate qualifications in timber engineering and management with roles in engineering and sales and project management for international building supplies companies, Stefan is ideally equipped to contribute to the success of mid-rise projects, at any stage in their development.

Beginning his career in the European tradition, with an apprenticeship in cabinetmaking, Stefan discovered a passion for timber that took him from Switzerland to a position at the Queensland Forestry Research Institute. This was followed by further study and work as a research scientist before he branched out into the commercial sector.

Discussing his role in the WoodSolutions team, Stefan says that he is looking forward to the challenge of getting early results to demonstrate to building professionals the potential benefits of specifying timber building systems in mid-rise development projects.

You can contact Stefan at Stefan.Gerber@woodsolutions.com.au

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