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Kelowna looking to allow 12 storey mass timber buildings


August 27, 2019
By Ellen Cools
Ellen Cools

The city of Kelowna, B.C., is participating in the Early Adoption initiative that allows mass timber buildings in the province, currently capped at six storeys, to be built up to 12 storeys.

“We’re excited to see Kelowna leading innovations in the construction industry,” said Mo Bayat, Kelowna’s development services director, in a government press release. “Because many of the components are pre-assembled in mass timber, it translates to a much faster build with less disruption to the neighbourhood.”

Mass timber buildings meet performance standards for safety, structural resilience and fire safety, while weighing one-fifth of comparable concrete buildings. In addition to construction cost-savings and easier assembly, mass timber buildings support B.C.’s forest-dependent communities, says the city of Kelowna.

Kelowna is also the site of Ellis Court, the first wood frame building in B.C. above four storeys, built in 2009.