Five Projects That Will Have You Yelling Timber

Did you know that timber is the only renewable construction material whose resources can be expanded and replenished? It’s also fire resistant, structurally sound, and a sustainable alternative to using steel, concrete, or masonry. As sustainable building continues to be a growing trend across North America, PCL is using mass timber products to push beyond the preconceived boundaries of the material to build taller buildings and reduce their carbon footprint. 

Here are some projects that are leading the timber revolution:


1.  Wood Innovation and Design Centre

Standing 95 feet tall, the Wood Innovation and Design Centre (WIDC) in Prince George, British Columbia, is one of North America’s tallest contemporary wood structures. The primary structure is 100% wood and showcases PCL’s expertise as a leader in sustainability and in the design and construction of large-scale wood buildings: WIDC won the 2014 CCA Environmental Achievement award. The building features glulam columns and beams, cross-laminated timber floors and walls, and laminated veneer-lumber curtainwall-wind columns. The University of Northern British Columbia is the main tenant and teaches its Masters of Engineering in Integrated Wood Design program there—educating the next generation of leaders in wood- construction. 

2.  Colorado State University Laurel Village 

Built on the Colorado State University (CSU) campus, the Laurel Village complex includes two residence halls, a student collaboration center (the Pavilion), and classrooms and study areas for the College of Natur​al Science academic program. The Pavilion at Laurel Village is the first cross-laminated timber structure built in Colorado and the first building on the CSU campus to receive LEED Platinum certification. 

3.  Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Building Technology and Renewable Energy Conservation

The Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Building Technology and Renewable Energy Conservation was designed to the Living Building Challenge standards, is LEED Platinum certified, and is one of the most innovative and advanced sustainable facilities in the world—it won the 2016 CCA Environmental Achievement award. The building fully incorporates systems that adhere to the most rigorous building sustainability programs and is free of any “red list” building materials used in construction. The project team sourced British Columbia beetle-kill pine wood, engineered wood and concrete wall panels, and hardwood for the athletic floor in the gymnasium. 

4.  University of Denver Pioneer Career Achievement Center

The University of Denver Pioneer Career Achievement Center is designed to meet LEED Gold standards and will contain several sustainable design features, such as a rooftop photovoltaic solar array. Serving as a centralized hub for students to connect with Denver University’s global network of alumni, potential employers, and community members, the Center features open lounges, enclosed interview spaces, community gathering areas and an event space. The primary structure contains several mass timber components, including cross-laminated timber panels for the floors, roof, and, shear walls; and glulam beams and columns. The project is set for completion in the summer of 2020.

5. Rocky Ridge Recreation Facility

The Rocky Ridge Recreation Facility, home to Shane Homes YMCA, is a 285,000-square-foot, multifunctional community hub that blends community, cultural, leisure, and recreation amenities for individuals, families, and sport groups. It was designed to complement the surrounding landscape of the wetlands and foothills of Calgary, Alberta. The curved roof structure features exposed glulam timber on the inside of the facility. This roof, constructed with over 30,000 square feet of glulam, is the largest timber roof in North America.