Wood First initatives – spreading from B.C. across the country
The Wood First initiative started in British Columbia. Their provincial government passed the Wood First Act in 2009 that requires wood to be considered as the primary building material in all new publicly-funded buildings, such as schools, libraries or sports complexes.
The goal of the Wood First Act is to encourage a cultural shift toward viewing wood as the first choice for construction, as well as for interior design, as well as strengthening B.C.’s traditional lumber, pulp and paper sectors.
33 communities in British Columbia have now adopted local Wood First resolutions and bylaws.
British Columbia also altered their provincial building code to build residential buildings up to six storeys to be framed in wood, rather than the previous four storeys.
British Columbia actively promoted their Richmond Olympic Oval arena during the 2010 Winter Olympics. That building has a ceiling built of four-by-eight pine beams. The building contains one million board feet of the mountain pine beetle-kill timber.
Quebec has passed a similar piece of legislation, mandating the use of wood in public buildings. Now many other provinces are working on their own wood first initiatives.
Nationally, the Canadian Wood Council is leading a campaign called Wood Works to increase the use of wood in commercial, industrial and institutional construction, with funding support from industry, Ottawa and provincial governments.
The state of Oregon in the USA has also working on a Wood First bill, based on the initiative in B.C.
To learn more about Wood First initiatives, visit:
Wood First to grow demand (Quesnell Cariboo Observer)
Wood Works! – B.C.
Wood Works! – Alberta
Wood Works! – Ontario
Wood Works! – Quebec
Wood First Initiative: Creating a Culture of Wood (B.C. Government)
Wood First Act (B.C.) (B.C. Government)
MLB president sees opportunity in forest crisis (Amherst Daily News)
N.B. exploring wood first construction strategy to boost forestry sector (Canadian Press)
Wood in 2010 Olympic & Paralympic Winter Games (naturally:wood)
Calendar of Events (Wood WORKS!)