In March, the provincial government announced it would be proactively adopting building code changes that allow the safe construction of taller wood buildings, which are currently allowed up to six storeys. (City of Kelowna) In March, the provincial government announced it would be proactively adopting building code changes that allow the safe construction of taller wood buildings, which are currently allowed up to six storeys. (City of Kelowna)

Kelowna one of 13 B.C. cities adopting mass timber tech

The same 13 communities represent 35 per cent of all housing starts in 2018

Kelowna is one of 13 B.C. communities that will adopt new timber innovations in construction this year.

The City of Kelowna has signed on to become early adopters to bring mass timber technology for the construction of new buildings that may rise as high as 12-storeys.

With the help of the University of British Columbia, the new timber tech allows for taller wood buildings that are faster to build and could be better overall for future construction projects in the province.

“Building with B.C. wood is good for people, communities, our economy and our climate. It will create thousands of jobs, reduce carbon pollution and support forest-dependent communities,” said Premier John Horgan.

“These 13 communities will help us get there faster.”

READ MORE: Taller timber towers piques Kelowna council’s interest

READ MORE: Fire Prevention Week coming to West Kelowna

Mass timber buildings are where the primary load-bearing structure is made of wood. They can be one-fifth of the weight of a concrete building, while still meeting performance standards.

The 13 communities, which includes North Vancouver, Campbell River, Richmond, Victoria and others, represent 35 per cent of all housing starts in 2018 in the province.

“These communities throughout B.C. are showing the nation that by seizing opportunities to change how we live and work, we can put B.C. on a cleaner, more sustainable path, while also supporting forest-dependent communities,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Housing.

“This is just one more way that our government is supporting local governments, builders, non-profits and community members to use innovative techniques to deliver the homes people need.”

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