Ontario investing in mass-timber construction

Ontario is investing $7.8 million in the research, education, and construction of tall wood buildings such as The Arbour, George Brown College’s tall wood campus building on Toronto’s waterfront.
Photo courtesy George Brown College

The Ontario government is investing $7.8 million in the research, education, and construction of tall wood buildings so more timber products can be employed in construction. A part of the province’s Climate Change Action Plan, the new Mass Timber Program is funded by proceeds from Ontario’s carbon market.

The Mass Timber Program promotes the use of wood in taller buildings by:

  • providing funding for research and development of innovative wood products, undertaken by academic and private research organizations, to support potential wood-related changes to the building code and other standards;
  • funding post-secondary education institutions to provide skills development and technical training, and to create tools relating to using wood in construction;
  • supporting the establishment of a tall wood research institute in Ontario, in partnership with researchers, universities, and colleges; and
  • demonstrating the successful use of mass timber in design, construction, and the fire safety of taller wooden buildings (seven storeys and higher) including four tall wood demonstration projects.

“Ontario’s Mass Timber Program will help make us a world leader in innovative new wood products and tall wood-framed building construction. Our government is committed to moving beyond six-storey structures and through our new centre for innovation, and partnerships with educational institutions here in Ontario, we know we can build a future that is environmentally friendly, innovative and safe,” said the minister of natural resources and forestry Nathalie Des Rosiers.

The province has also released Ontario’s Tall Wood Reference: A Technical Resource for Developing Alternative Solutions under Ontario’s Building Code to assist architects, engineers, building, fire officials, and developers in the creation of safe alternative solutions for taller wood projects.

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