Wood is a great ecological option and is also relatively affordable. It can last many years depending on the type of wood you choose. Below are a few wood options that some of you will be more familiar with then others. They have all been used with some frequency in the Toronto construction marketplace.
Treated wood: This is the most commonly known type of wood because of its availability and affordability. However, because it needs to be re-treated more frequently to prevent surface degradation it's maintenance costs will be higher than most woods. Its price, including supporting structure and installation, comes out to an average of $58 per square foot.
Cedar: This wood is popular because of its natural wood properties and beautiful color. Western Red Cedar has natural tannins within the wood that help prevent the wood from insect infestation and decay. Ongoing coating maintenance of this wood is necessary to keep it from greying from exposure to excessive sunlight. Price wise, it costs an average of $76 per square foot with the supporting structure and installation.
Ipe: It stands out for its strength, durability, and density. These properties make it highly rot resistant and the species is known for its density which can make it difficult to work with if you do not have the right installation tools. Harvested mainly in South America and imported into North America it has become a mainstay for a tropical wood decking option. Price wise, it costs an average of $80.00 per square foot with the supporting structure and installation.
Thermally Modified Wood: Quickly becoming a more suitable option in North America as a decking alternative. The food sources (sugars) that mold and bacteria feed on are removed from the wood during the thermal modification process. This makes thermally modified wood decking much more rot resistant which in turn helps make it longer lasting. One of the main selling points for this type of wood is that it contains no chemical agents making it very environmentally friendly. Its price, including supporting structure and installation, comes out to an average of $88.00 per square foot.