Business Intelligence for B.C. | April 4, 2024
Grant Newfield, MEng, P.Eng., Struct.Eng. | Principal

With more than 40 per cent of Canadian mass-timber projects already based in the province, B.C. is poised to capture ‘tidal wave’ of interest

Driven by government initiatives and rising industry interest, B.C.’s country-leading mass-timber industry is poised for a new chapter of development.

New incentives from the City of Vancouver and the provincial government are expected to drive the development of more mass-timber buildings, according to those who spoke to BIV.

At the same time, there is growing interest within the private development community to take on mass-timber projects, said Robert Malczyk, principal at Timber Engineering Inc.

“I think we passed the point of time where it was only pilot projects. Now we see the wave of private projects and owners are seeing that it really makes sense to build mass timber,” said Malczyk.

Sarah Bingham, vice-president of development and sustainability with Adera Development Corp., said that there are more projects “seriously contemplating and putting in applications using mass timber.”

While there is no doubt that there is growing interest in mass timber, Grant Newfield said that the mass timber market still has a way to go.

“You have to make the way for change, you have to write the codes to adopt change and then there is always a lag between getting the industry up to speed, as the demand increases,” said Newfield, a professional engineer and principal at Read Jones Christoffersen Ltd., also known as RJC Engineers.

“We’re in that stage of an evolving [industry], but it’s still going to be a five-year period to see it get to a more mature level.”

B.C. leads the country in mass-timber construction, with 355 such projects completed, under construction or planned from 2007 through to the first three months of 2024, according to a federal government map that tracks mass-timber projects. Quebec has the second-highest number of such projects, at 221.

B.C.’s total represents 42.6 per cent of the 832 mass-timber projects in various stages of planning or development across Canada.

Read Publication Back to Published Items