Is the Construction Industry About to Enter the “Timber Age”?

Tham & Videgård Arkitekter's Wooden Highrise apartments for Stockholm

Tham & Videgård Arkitekter’s Wooden Highrise apartments for Stockholm. Photo Source: /www.dezeen.com/

“New types of engineered timber that are considerably stronger and more stable than regular wood are allowing architects to build bigger and higher, with timber skyscrapers now a real prospect.”-www.dezeen.com

As we are about to enter a new year, we in the timber industry are asking,

Are we entering what architects are calling “The Timber Age”?

As more and more builders are seeking sustainable designs, some architects appear to moving away from conventional materials (i.e.steel, masonry, concrete) and embracing wood as the “architectural wonder material of the 21st century”.

And it’s no wonder.  Builders and  architects alike are recognizing timber for it unique aesthetics, sustainability, quality and speed of construction.

“This is the beginning of the timber age,” said UK architect Andrew Waugh in this recent article. Waugh’s firm is behind a housing development in London that will use more timber than any other project in the world.

In Portland OR, builders plan to build a 12-story tower the city’s famed Pearl District.  In the Portland Tribune, Thomas Robinson of Lever Architecture says that this type of wood not only resists fires, it will have the ability to absorb the shock of a major earthquake.

These buildings are not limited to London and Portland.  Plans for these tall timber buildings are also cropping up in Manhattan, Italy, Australia British Columbia and many more locations all over the world.

The building material making these wooden tower structures possible is cross-laminated timber (CLT)– a large-scale, prefabricated, solid engineered wood panel.

Will cross laminated timber (CLT) take over steel and concrete as the preferred building material?


In it’s description of cross-laminated timber (CLT), APA – The Engineered Wood Association describes the material as “lightweight yet very strong, with superior acoustic, fire, seismic, and thermal performance, CLT is also fast and easy to install, generating almost no waste onsite. CLT offers design flexibility and low environmental impacts.”

This video reviews the Tall Timber Report that Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP developed as it relates to the details of the hybrid building system, fire and durability.

Aside from the structural benefits of wood, there are other benefits to using this material in buildings. Exposure to natural materials has real and measurable health and wellbeing benefits for the building’s occupants.  Corey Griffin, an Associate Professor at the Architecture School at Portland State University, says studies have shown that people are more productive and less stressed in buildings with access to natural materials.

In addition, research suggests that these modern wood structures may result in lower costs and a lower carbon footprint since production and processing of wood uses less energy than most other building materials.

This is a very exciting time for the timber industry as the technology, research and designs evolve.  To learn more about this movement, we encourage you to take a look at some of these resources.

Article Resources:
www.dezeen.com
www.rethinkwood.com
www.woodworks.org
portlandtribune.com

2015 EWTA Supplier of the Year Awards

 2015 Supplier Award Winners

The 2015 EWTA Supplier of the Year Award Winners Were Announced During the 2015 APA Annual Meeting

The 2015 Engineered Wood Technology Association (EWTA) Supplier of the Year awards were announced last week during the Annual Meeting Chairman’s Dinner at APA’s 2015 Annual Meeting and the EWTA Info Fair in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. APA members voted from a list of outstanding nominees in the following categories: Equipment/Tooling, Materials/Supplies, and Consulting/Services.

And the winners are:

2015 Supplier Award Winners:

That’s right! Willamette Valley Company has won the 2015 EWTA Supplier of the Year Award in the Materials/Supplies category!

This latest accolade means a great deal because it is based on the quality and delivery of products, equipment and/or services, as determined by a vote of APA members.

Our goal is always to build superior solutions, not win awards. But it’s always nice when our peers and industry leaders and associations recognize our commitment to service, quality, and excellence. Willamette Valley Company has worked for decades to maintain strong relationships with members of the wood products industry by supplying them with innovative solutions, top notch service and high quality wood products including synthetic patch, putty, epoxy, specialty coatings, ink, paint, and end and edge seal as well as metering and dispensing equipment.

Congratulations to our fellow 2015 EWTA Supplier of the Year Award Winners: Hunt, Guillot & Associates LLC, Panel World Magazine/Hatton-Brown Publishers, Inc., and KADANT Carmanah Design.

The winners will also be featured in the spring 2016 issue of the Engineered Wood Journal.

The Engineered Wood Technology Association is a related non-profit corporation of APA – The Engineered Wood Association. EWTA represents companies that provide products and services to the engineered wood products manufacturing industry. EWTA is based in Tacoma, Wash. To learn more, visit engineeredwood.org.

Major Milestones of the Softwood Plywood Industry

Article Source: www.apawood.org

The average person may not realize the significance of the softwood plywood industry to our economy and culture.

Since our roots are in the wood products industry, we thought it would be interesting to take a look back at the history of the softwood plywood Industry and the impact it has had on the United States.

What began as a product introduced by a small wooden box company in Oregon has grown into a major global industry. Today, the United States is the leading producer of softwood plywood and world’s largest producer of softwood lumber, followed by Canada and Russia according to www.state.sc.us/forest.

“Plywood is widely regarded as the original ‘engineered wood product’ because it was one of the first to be made by bonding together cut or refashioned pieces of wood to form a larger and integral composite unit. This idea of “reconstituting” wood fiber to produce better-than-wood building materials has led in more recent times to a technological revolution and the rise of a whole new engineered wood products industry.”-www.apawood.org

Here are some of the important milestones in this industry:

Portland Manufacturing Company Photo Source: APA—The Engineered Wood Association

1905
Portland Manufacturing Company produced “3-ply veneer work”, the first commercial softwood plywood product to be introduced to the public.

The product, made of Pacific Northwest Douglas-fir, was displayed at the World’s Fair held in Portland.

Orders started coming in from door, cabinet and trunk manufacturers.
Other mills began making the product and the new industry spread north to Washington.

1913
The first Canadian plywood was produced at Fraser Mills in New Westminster, British Columbia.

1920s
Automobile manufacturers began using plywood for running boards.

1925
11 U.S. plants were producing 153 million square feet of plywood per year.

1933
Douglas Fir Plywood Association, the first nonprofit trade association in the industry, was founded in Tacoma, WA.

The new association developed a nationwide promotion program and helped mills assure consistent product quality.

Douglas Fir Plywood Association also helped to develop new markets and new business during the Great Depression.

1934
Waterproof glue was discovered which led to even more product application opportunities.

1938
A new commercial standard was developed and the product was promoted as a standardized commodity rather than by individual brand names.

1940
Plywood was being used as subfloors, wall sheathing, roof sheathing, paneling and in other building construction applications.

The industry had grown to 25 mills and production topped one billion square feet.

Eighty percent of production originated in the state of Washington.

1941
The plywood production industry contributed to the WWII effort. Plywood was used in PT boats, assault ships, airplanes, barracks, military buildings, shipping crates, footlockers and countless other military applications.

1947
The post-war baby and housing booms took off which caused the industry to grow dramatically.

The industry had expanded to 40 mills producing 1.6 billion feet.

1950
The Plywood Manufacturers Association of British Columbia was founded (which is known as the Canadian Plywood Association, or CANPLY today).

1952
The founders of Willamette Valley Company company recognized the lumber industry’s need for solutions to production challenges and to create better wood products.

1954
The number of mills had grown to 100. 47 of them were in Oregon, 36 were in Washington, 17 were in California.

Softwood plywood production had grown to four billion square feet.

1960
U.S. production exceeded 7.8 billion square feet which beat what analysts had predicted by 15 years.
Canadian production topped one billion square feet.

1964
Georgia-Pacific Corporation opened the nation’s first southern pine plywood mill in Fordyce, Arkansas.

The Douglas Fir Plywood Association changed its name to American Plywood Association (APA) in recognition of the emergence of the southern pine plywood industry.

1982
The industry had expanded to 175 softwood plywood plants with a combined production capacity of nearly 23.1 billion square feet in the United States.

1994
American Plywood Association (APA) was renamed again to APA—The Engineered Wood Association to better reflect the broadening product mix and geographic range of its membership, which now encompasses a wide array of engineered wood products manufactured in both the U.S. and Canada.

2005
Lumber mills in the South were producing 10 billion square feet (two-thirds of U.S. softwood plywood production).

Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana produced the remaining one-third—some 4.8 billion feet. Oregon has been the number one producing state for the last half century.

The residential construction market still accounts for about one-third of plywood market demand in the U.S.—an estimated 5.4 billion square feet.

Present Day
Plywood is commonly used for subflooring, wall and roof sheathing, siding, soffits, and stair treads and risers.

The largest single U.S. market for softwood plywood today is the industrial sector, including such applications as furniture frames, truck trailer linings, RV floors, agricultural bins, shipping containers, and pallets.

More information about softwood plywood and other engineered wood products can be found at www.apawood.org.

About APA—The Engineered Wood Association
APA—The Engineered Wood Association is a nonprofit trade association of and for structural wood panel, glulam timber, wood I-joist, laminated veneer lumber and other engineered wood product manufacturers throughout North America. Based in Tacoma, Washington, the Association was founded in 1933 as the Douglas Fir Plywood Association. APA represents approximately 150 mills throughout North America. APA members range from small, independently owned and operated companies to large integrated corporations. The Association’s primary functions are quality auditing, applied research, and market support and development

photo credit: Peter Guthrie via photopin cc

Willamette Valley Company Awarded 2013 Supplier of the Year by APA – The Engineered Wood Association!

We recently learned that Panel World Magazine, Westmill Industries USA Corp., Ventek Inc. and Willamette Valley Company are receiving recognition from APA – The Engineered Wood Association as 2013 industry leaders!

EWTA’s Supplier of the Year Awards are based on the quality and delivery of EWTA member products, equipment and/or services supplied to APA members, as determined by a vote of APA mill managers.

The awards will be presented at the 2013 The Engineered Wood Technology Association (EWTA) Info Fair in Huntington Beach, Calif., Nov. 2–4.  

Now in it’s 20th year, the EWTA Info Fair is a product and services exposition featuring equipment manufacturers, product suppliers and service providers from approximately 68 EWTA member companies!

WVCO has participated as an (EWTA) Info Fair Gold Level sponsor and been honored with APA’s Supplier of the Year award in past years. Be sure to follow our updates from the 2013 event on Twitter and Facebook!

 

Willamette Valley Company to Help Sponsor 20th EWTA Info Fair and Annual Golf Tournament

WVCO values our partnership with the APA – The Engineered Wood Association and will again be a Gold Sponsor of the 2013 The Engineered Wood Technology Association (EWTA) Info Fair.  This annual event is considered to be the premier supplier exhibition for North America’s leading engineered product manufacturers and service providers and held in conjunction with APA’s Annual Meeting in Huntington Beach, Calif., Nov. 2–4.

Tustin Ranch Course
Photo Source: www.apawood.org

In addition we will join other companies including Arclin, Georgia-Pacific Chemicals, LLC, Momentive Specialty Chemicals, Inc., Raute, Ventek, Inc., and Westmill Industries to sponsor the Mike St. John Memorial Golf Tournament on Sunday, Nov. 3, 2013.

APA’s Annual Golf tournament honors the life of Mike St. John, Pacific woodtech executive and APA trustee, who passed away in November, 2012. The tournament will take place
at the Tustin Ranch Course, an award winning 18-hole course featuring breathtaking scenery, sparkling lakes and cascading falls.

Now in it’s 20th year, the EWTA Info Fair is a product and services exposition featuring equipment manufacturers, product suppliers and service providers from approximately 68 EWTA member companies!

WVCO has participated as an (EWTA) Info Fair Gold Level sponsor and been honored with APA’s Supplier of the Year award in past years. WVCO President, John Harrison, and company representatives attended last year’s Info Fair at the beautiful Ritz-Carlton in Amelia Island, Florida.

 

Be sure to follow our updates from the 2013 event on Twitter and Facebook!

A bit of history: 

The Engineered Wood Technology Association (EWTA) is a related nonprofit corporation of APA—The Engineered Wood Association, the leading North American association of engineered wood product manufacturers.

APA was founded in 1933 as the Douglas Fir Plywood Association, and was later recognized as the American Plywood Association. In 1994, APA changed its name to APA – The Engineered Wood Association to better reflect the range of products manufactured by APA members and the international scope of the Association.

Since then, APA-The Engineered Wood Association has helped our industry create exceptional wood products while promoting new solutions and improved processes.

Today, the organization represents approximately 150 mills throughout North America, ranging in size and structure. The association is considered the “Leading Resource for Information About Engineered Wood Products”.

To learn more about APA programs and resources which include nearly 500 publications, extensive research and technical reports, free CAD details, comprehensive market studies and more, visit www.apawood.org.

WVCO Partnership Spotlight: The Engineered Wood Technology Association

WVCO truly values our unique partnerships with leading associations and other organizations in our industry. These partnerships, like the one we have with the Engineered Wood Technology Association (EWTA), have enabled us to better serve our customers by giving us access to the latest technologies, methodologies, and resources.

The Engineered Wood Technology Association is a related non-profit corporation of APA – The Engineered Wood Association and represents companies that provide products and services to the engineered wood products manufacturing industry.

One of the most vital functions of EWTA is managing the annual Info Fair supplier exhibition held in conjunction with the APA annual meeting each year.

Willamette Valley Company at the 2012 EWTA Info Fair at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, FL.

The EWTA Info Fair is one of the biggest industry events of the year featuring equipment manufacturers, product suppliers and service providers.  The Willamette Valley Company is looking forward to attending the Info Fair, now in it’s 20th year, November 2–4, 2013 at the Huntington Beach Hyatt Regency Resort & Spa, California.

EWTA also connects engineered wood product manufacturers with their suppliers by sponsoring market and technical research, forums, meetings and networking events. Their industry trade magazine, The Engineered Wood Journal, along with the other communication vehicles, shares the most current news and trends  in the Equipment/Tooling, Consulting/Services, Materials/Supplies industry.

 

Ready for the 2012 EWTA Info Fair in Amelia Island, Florida

“Info Fair is the best exhibition that we do – it allows us to interface with the management of many of our very important clients, and support EWTA in a mutually beneficial setting,”- Tony Vuksich, WVCO Vice President.

The Willamette Valley Company team is packing up once again and gearing up for the 2012 The Engineered Wood Technology Association (EWTA) Info Fair.

This annual event is considered to be the premier supplier exhibition for North America’s leading engineered product manufacturers, and will place will November 10 – 13 at the Ritz-Carlton in Amelia Island, Florida. WVCO plans to exhibit a variety of products and custom solutions relating to plywood, LVL, OSB, lumber, cabinets and furniture, and more.

The Engineered Wood Technology Association (EWTA)  is a related nonprofit corporation of APA—The Engineered Wood Association, the leading North American association of engineered wood product manufacturers.

The (EWTA) Info Fair is held in conjunction with the APA—The Engineered Wood Association‘s annual meeting.  WVCO is a long time member of the EWTA and has participated as an (EWTA) Info Fair Gold Level sponsor and been honored with APA’s Supplier of the Year award in past years.

Be sure to follow our updates from the exhibit on Twitter and Facebook!