ReNew magazine writes about exploring opportunities for the growth of mass timber in Canada:
In June, ReNew Canada convened an expert discussion with industry stakeholders from across the country in order to better appreciate the barriers to mass timber’s growth in Canada, and how Canada can best position itself to capitalize on the global movement, pegged by U.S. researchers to be 150-230 per cent from 2017 to 2025.
Moving the needle
Mass timber has already been demonstrated in Canada, although on a limited basis and at a limited scale.
British Columbia has been the standard bearer for adoption of mass timber construction, not surprising based on its vast supplies of wood products and commitment to carbon emission reductions. The province has recognized both the economic and environmental benefits of construction using cross-laminated timber (CLT) and glulam, and has already created such landmark projects as Brock Commons at the University of British Columbia and the Wood Design and Innovation Centre in Prince George. Brock Commons represented the tallest timber structure in the world.
It was October of that year when the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry released its Tall Wood Building Reference for construction of six-storey mass timber structures…And while it is important for all impacted municipal staff members to understand the value of building with wood, the drive to do so must be provided by the people in leadership positions.
“Unless you have that downward pressure from the government on the various departments, the change won’t happen easily,” said David Moses, principal at Moses Structural Engineers.”
Having champions at the highest levels of government, be they mayors, councillors, reeves, wardens, or perhaps influencers among provincial and federal government representatives, will take an uptick in education and lobbying. The Canada Wood Council was formed to educate the country on the overall benefits of wood, and along with the newly formed Mass Timber Institute, has taken the lead in providing on the benefits of tall wood construction.
If municipal staff need verification of the viability of the products involved in mass timber construction, there are buildings right in Ontario where the values of using these products are on display.