Urban Wood Forum. A peak into the future of wood structures in urban centers.

I had the pleasure of attending a discussion forum on the advancement of wood structures being specified in urban areas such as the City of Toronto. The host of this event was Canada Green Building Council and sponsored by Upper Canada Forest Products.

Guest speakers from the wood industry and architectural community provided insight on the development and implementation of wood structures utilizing laminated wood timbers that highlighted sustainability with low or zero carbon footprints. Many believe, as I do, this is the future of building with wood. The advancement of utilizing wood in building multi-storey structures has grown from just an idea to being specified within blueprints of structures by well renowned architects and engineers. Its now viewed as a reliable option along side traditional steel and concrete.

Architect Veronica Madonna from Moriyama & Teshima Architects was a guest speaker and she spoke on their pre-construction project called the “The Arbour“. This is a proposed 12 storey wood building at George Brown College’s Waterfront Campus in Toronto. It would be Toronto’s first ever tall wood structure.

There are still hurdles to overcome such as changes to Ontario’s Building Code as cities continue to monitor the advancement of this ever increasing reliable and sustainable building solution. However, Toronto city officials have been keeping a close eye on the advancement of the Arbour project and lets hope this project gets all the necessary approvals in becoming a beacon of advancement in wood being utilized in multi-storey structures in the City of Toronto.

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