Nearly 200 architectural, structural and fire engineering and service professionals, as well as building and insurance officials, developers, builders and installers gathered at the Surrey Fire Department Training Facility on Tuesday, October 16 for the Fire Performance Demonstration Workshop 2.0, hosted by Wood WORKS! BC and the Canadian Wood Council. This workshop provided essential information about wood building fire requirements in the upcoming revised buildings codes. The event opened with a classroom format featuring 10 speakers and three “roll up your sleeves” interactive sessions. After a lunch at visiting local food trucks, a live burn commenced that showcased side-by-side fire comparisons of three large (8’ x 8’) demonstration boxes; a cross-laminated timber (CLT) cube, a steel cube, and a course of construction cube, each built to code.
An engaging program, this event proved to be essential for learning and understanding taller and larger wood building fire requirements in the upcoming 2018 BC Building Code and 2020 National Building Code. Speakers from the fire, building and design communities addressed attendees including Don Pedde of the Province of BC Building and Safety Standards branch who gave an overview of the coming code changes and revisions and Sean de Winter from GHL Consultants, who provided information on Alternative Solutions and Site Specific Regulations. One of Canada’s leading fire experts, Andrew Harmsworth from GHL Consultants, provided informed commentary on the live burns together with Marc Alam, Technical Specialist – Fire Code & Standards of the Canadian Wood Council.
Learning outcomes included fire resistance/fire stopping design for mass timber; gypsum installation on mass timber, fire standard testing, and fire protection and sound control solutions for the new BCBC.
The fire tests demonstrated that mass timber can last and hold up load in a fire for a significant amount of time, whether it is exposed or protected. The tests also showed that mass timber is comparable in a fire to noncombustible construction (CLT to steel frame cube). In addition, it was shown that the charring of the wood protects the unburned portion of the wood from heat and allows the wood to hold up the load.
Marc Alam, Technical Specialist – Fire Code & Standards of the Canadian Wood Council.
Sukh Johal, Technical Manager at Wood WORKS! BC was very pleased with the workshop outcome – the second workshop of its kind in BC.
“We wish to thank CertainTeed, Hilti, IPEX and all sponsors for their support of the workshop which made this invaluable learning event possible.”
To learn more about upcoming Wood WORKS! BC educational events, visit here.
An increasing number of health-care facilities are incorporating wood to provide patients and visitors with a warm, natural aesthetic, and a calm, stress-reducing connection to nature.
Research begins to show the biophilic benefits of wood, which suggests that humans possess an innate tendency to seek connections with nature. Study results show students who spent time in rooms featuring natural wood exhibited lower stress reactivity. During all three periods of the study, stress, as measured by sympathetic nervous system activation, was measurably lower on average in the rooms featuring wood than in the non-wood office.
The bold, striking use of wood throughout the space — uncommon in such health-care settings— softens the hospital’s institutional feel and creates a calm, stress-reducing connection to nature, while standing up to weather, wear and tear, and rigorous maintenance. As the research on biophilic benefits of wood continues to grow, one of B.C.’s busiest hospitals leads the way in offering patients a comforting, supportive, and healing environment.
For architect and timber advocate Peter Busby, wood is one of nature’s greatest innovations
B.C. forest products are a predominant structural and finishing material for a wide range of transit infrastructure throughout the province, including airports, bus exchanges and SkyTrain stations. Learn more about the use of wood in transportation projects.
Learn about the latest wood design and construction trends within these four building applications while earning Architectural Institute of British Columbia (AIBC) recognized continuing learning units towards professional development.
With its wide-ranging use of different wood species, the Prince George Airport demonstrates how a high-traffic building can benefit from the resilience, versatility, durability, and thermal characteristics of wood. These were important considerations for this northern city, situated at the confluence of the Fraser and Nechako Rivers, which is prone to cold, harsh winters.
An effective insulator with a warm aesthetic, wood is particularly well suited to the demanding atmospheres of swimming pools — as well as ice rinks in arenas. Wood tolerates high levels of humidity, offers acoustic and thermal benefits, and absorbs and releases water vapour without compromising its structural integrity. Indoor pool design has evolved to include ample use of natural light and bold, innovative uses of B.C. wood from sustainably managed forests.
Interview with Darryl Condon, Managing Principal of HCMA Architecture + Design, who has embraced and often pioneered the use of wood and mass timber in community, civic, and recreational aquatic facilities throughout British Columbia and Canada. He shares why wood is often an integral material in the buildings they design, and how they’ve pushed the boundaries of what is possible with wood.
Located in John Hendry Park in east Vancouver, this ice rink was the first phase in the replacement of an aging community centre facility. The rink served as a practice facility for competitors who participated in the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games and opened for public use after the Games.