Kelowna, B.C., city council has approved Water Street by the Park, a three-tower development that includes 650 homes, 4181 m2 (45,000 sf) of retail and restaurant space, and what will be the tallest tower in B.C.’s Interior, standing at 133 m (442 ft) once completed.
For public projects, as for other types of buildings, new engineered mass timber products, supported by recent legislation, make wood an economic and functional choice in both rural and urban areas. Two recent B.C. projects illustrate this point.
Katerra has emerged as North America’s largest end-to-end mass timber design, manufacturing, and construction firm with the capacity to produce 185,000 m3 (653,3213 cf) of cross-laminated timber (CLT) annually.
Construction has begun on the workplace component of the Bayside Toronto waterfront master-planned community with the groundbreaking of T3 Bayside (T3 stands for timber, talent, and technology). The first of two twin, heavy timber office buildings at Bayside Toronto, T3 Bayside will be constructed using an innovative and highly sustainable mass timber structure, and feature market-leading amenities.
British Columbia Premier John Horgan has announced the province will focus on mass timber construction to bolster the forest industry. Premier Horgan has appointed Ravi Kahlon, parliamentary secretary for forests, lands, natural resource operations, and rural development, to lead the expansion and use of mass timber in B.C. buildings.
The 2015 edition of the National Building Code of Canada (NBC) permits mixed-type occupancies on the first two storeys of wood buildings. Two facilities in British Columbia, both with primary retail occupancies, employ several mass wood products to achieve very different effects.
Changes to building codes, fear of fire risks, and the introduction of steel and concrete have caused a decline in wood building construction. However, wood has made a big comeback and new changes being introduced to the National Building Code (NBC) in 2020 might result in the rise of tall wood buildings.
Rethinking conventional development in the heart of Victoria, B.C., D’Ambrosio Architecture and Urbanism propose two mass timber multi-family residential buildings over one level of underground parking called Speed Frances.