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Customization is Key

Innovative home builders and designers are motivated to create a distinctive design that optimizes energy efficiency and style. Planning a new home is exciting and there are countless details to contemplate. However, the advantage is that you have the opportunity to choose the elements to incorporate into the overall design of your home. Customization is key in making your home uniquely yours. Further, high-performance homes focus on homeowner comfort, natural beauty, and sustainability. Cedar wood is ideal for modern builds since it checks all these boxes. Traditional cedar design evolved over time from First Nations communities. The readily available cedar wood was used to build canoes, paddles, totem poles, homes, and a variety of other items such as baskets and clothing. Striking cedar boxes with elaborate carving can also be found in upscale art galleries and gift shops today.  New cedar design trends abound in cedar wood furniture, fencing, musical instruments, siding, accent walls, ceilings, and roofing. Fortunately, there are several ways to make a project exceptional with cedar wood, both indoors and out.

INDOOR CEDAR ELEMENTS 

Ceiling: All eyes will go upward when you have a gorgeous cedar ceiling inside the home. Radiating natural warmth and with well-appointed lighting, a cedar ceiling shines. Kitchen Cabinetry: Cedar kitchen cabinets offer a distinct rustic charm in modern kitchens. They accept any colour of stain and paint easily, thereby making it a versatile wood. In addition, custom cedar cabinets look stunning in a log home. Red cedar kitchen cupboards add warmth. Staircases and Railings: Custom cedar stairs and railings are a stunning focal point in a well-designed home. Railings can also be artfully mixed with glass and metal materials for a modern aesthetic.

OUTDOOR CEDAR ELEMENTS

Cedar Fence Panels: Although somewhat expensive, pre-built Cedar fencing panels look beautiful. In addition, they come in several styles to suit individual preference. Arched, flat or lattice topped, cedar fencing readily accepts any colour of stain you want for a truly customized fence for your property. Decks and Lighting: Even though an environmentally friendly cedar deck is expensive and requires regular maintenance, it blends in superbly with nature. Be mindful natural cedar can be scraped or dented more easily than other types of deck material. Aromatic and long-lasting, cedar decks also resist insect infestations. Constructed with landscape lighting, cedar decking creates admirable evening ambience.  Outbuildings: A charming cedar garage or garden shed looks like it belongs when thoughtfully incorporated into your landscape design. Insect and rot resistant, natural oils in cedar wood help prevent UV rays and moisture from penetrating.  Custom Shingles: The perfect choice for its natural durability and strength, cedar shingles and shakes further make for visually appealing roofs. Custom cedar shingles are exquisite for beachfront homes and rustic cottages. They also offer a certain sophistication to upscale residences. Elegant and timeless, cedar roofing has lasting character and charm.  The additional benefits of a cedar roof include longevity, strength to withstand stormy conditions, and energy efficiency as cedar has inherent insulation qualities.

INTERIOR & OUTDOOR CEDAR ELEMENTS

Wood Timbers and Beams: Western Red Cedar timbers come available in clear or knotty grades for both interior and exterior use. Not only for structural use, cedar timbers and beams can be used to make gorgeous overhangs for entryways, gazebos, and striking window frames. A thoughtfully customized home extends the indoor living space into the outdoors. Now you, your loved ones have multiple amazing areas to relax, entertain, and unwind. No doubt about it, renewable cedar wood structures just feel healthier. Source your local cedar from Longhouse for your next customized cedar build.
How to Achieve a Modern House Design

Elegant Accents

Cedar trees are inherently beautiful and grow abundantly on BC’s West Coast. While undeniably a versatile softwood for modern building and renovations, there are countless ways cedar wood is being incorporated in design features. Both designers and homeowners are beginning to feature elegant cedar accents in new and old builds. But first, Yellow and Western Red Cedar from Longhouse has a number of familiar uses. 

Common Cedar Features

  • Traditional wood gables over entryways
  • Attractive cedar fencing panels
  • Custom multi-level decking around the home
  • Aromatic chests and closets
  • Interior paneling
  • Park boardwalks
  • Planters
  • Wood beams
But cedar is further highlighted in awe-inspiring contemporary design as well.

Modern Cedar Accents & Features

  • Silvery grey West Coast style beach houses (unstained cedar left to age naturally)
  • Drop channel diagonal or vertical cedar wood siding
  • Other cedar siding designs, such as board & batten or tongue & groove
  • Warm wood siding paired with cool stainless-steel windows 
  • Mixed glass and cedar wood walls
  • Mixed vertical and horizontal installed wood siding
  • Classic, rustic knotty Western Red Cedar siding 
  • Cedar mixed with stone and steel materials for contemporary projects
  • Cedar deck furniture
  • Exterior and interior cedar beams
  • Rough sawn cedar fascia
  • Raised cedar box garden beds
  • Fire treated cedar on retirement homes and wood school buildings
  • Dark stained cedar (ie. Charcoal Grey) siding and decking
  • Sophisticated wood farmhouse renovations
  • Cedar clad roof with skylights
  • Stylish wood window shutters
  • Pre-stained cedar window frames
  • Graphic cedar accent wall inside the home
  • Pre-stained cedar front door
  • Pre-stained cedar garage door
  • Cedar shakes for roofs and siding
  • Privacy cedar panels installed around home exterior and landscaping
  • Outdoor or indoor cedar sauna
People have always been attracted to the rustic allure and versatile characteristics of Western Red Cedar. Innovative Northwest Coast Indigenous cultures used cedar to make baskets, canoes, totems, and medicines. They made cedar popular because it’s not prone to cracking, and therefore pliable, and also repels insects. Certainly, homeowners needn’t commit to designing a building entirely with cedar. There are countless design accents that can highlight cedar beautifully in any home scheme. Cedar adds a natural warmth and outdoor charm to any build, making it a popular building selection for designers and homeowners alike. Moreover, cedar wood presents a natural warmth that cannot be imitated by other materials. Our dedicated professionals at Longhouse Specialty Forest Products can help you plan for your next project. We also ship our custom cut Yellow and Western Red Cedar products worldwide.

From Coast to Coast

From Coast to Coast   Cedar trees grow lush and large on Vancouver Island, where visitors come from all over the world to enjoy their natural beauty. Undoubtedly, the smell of an old growth cedar forest is a sensual experience for the eyes and nose. From coast to coast, Canada has two recognized types of cedar trees and they each have unique characteristics. Also called ‘Tree of Life’ (arbor vitae), the cedar received this name as it was believed that the tea made from the leaves and bark of the Eastern White Cedar cured scurvy that affected Jacques Cartier’s crew during the winter of 1535-36. Originally, cedar was used to make totem poles, canoes, medicines, perfumes, clothing, tools, baskets, nets, and lodges by West Coast aboriginal people. No doubt about it, cedar wood is a versatile material! Two species of cedar (genus Thuja) are typically recognized in Canada: The Eastern White Cedar and Western Red Cedar. EASTERN WHITE CEDAR Eastern white cedar trees are aptly found in eastern Canada. They grow in the Maritimes, Great Lakes and St. Lawrence forests of Quebec and Ontario, in addition to parts of Manitoba and New Brunswick. They are also found on the western portions of Nova Scotia and PEI. These slower growing cedar trees can grow up to a modest 15-20 meters high over many decades. The diameter can be up to 1 meter. Branches are greenish-yellow scaly leaves with fan-shapes sprays. The bark is brown and stringy looking. The pale brown cones only grow up to 1-centimeter long and have scales with rounded tips. Eastern cedar is lighter in colour than Western cedar, with light brown heartwood and whitish sapwood. White cedars thrive in cool, moist, acidic soil and are often found near streams or creeks. They offer shelter and food to birds and other wildlife like deer, porcupine, squirrels, and snowshoe hares. WESTERN RED CEDAR This type will be the most familiar to Vancouver Islanders as it grows along the Pacific Coast of BC, including the Queen Charlotte Islands. Western Reds are also found in parts of Alberta. Another slow-growing cedar, it can reach an impressive 60 meters high with more than a 3-meter diameter trunk. Conical-shaped Western Red cedar trees can live up to 1,000 years old. The fragrant branches are comprised of glossy, greenish-yellow sprays with one and a quarter-centimeter cones. Deer and other wildlife feast on the foliage of the cedar along the West Coast and near the Rocky Mountains. Light to medium brown, the Western cedar generally has brown-pinkish heartwood with an almost white sapwood. Western cedar takes stain slightly better than Eastern cedar. When left unstained, the wood changes to a gorgeous coastal silvery grey. All cedar wood is typically soft, light in colour, resistant to decay and insects, with a woodsy aromatic scent. More durable than other softwoods, both types have a straight, even grain. However, the Western Red has a coarser texture compared to the Eastern White. Cedar is simple to work with since it’s easy to glue and machines easily. Typical uses of cedar include decks, cedar shakes and shingles, fencing, outdoor furniture, siding, and saunas. Cedar trees, also referred to as evergreen conifers of the cypress family, are also great trees to have in the backyard since they require little maintenance. Luckily, builders are able to purchase local cedar grown and sustainably harvested here on the island.

WOOD / TIMBER / LUMBER AS A CONSTRUCTION MATERIAL

Article Courtesy of Understand Building Construction

wood as a building material

Wood has been used as a building material for thousands of years, being second only to stone in terms of its rich and storied history in the world of construction. The chemical properties of wood are inherently complex, but even in spite of this challenge, human beings have successfully harnessed the unique characteristics of wood to build a seemingly unlimited variety of structures. This exceptionally versatile material is commonly used to build houses, shelters and boats, but it is also extensively used in the furniture and home decor industry as well. Perhaps one of the biggest advantages of using wood as a building material is that it is a natural resource, making it readily available and economically feasible. It is remarkably strong in relation to its weight, and it provides good insulation from the cold. Wood is highly machinable, and can be fabricated into all kinds of shapes and sizes to fit practically any construction need. Wood is also the perfect example of an environmentally sustainable product; it is biodegradable and renewable, and carries the lowest carbon footprint of any comparable building material. In addition, no high-energy fossil fuels are required to produce wood, unlike other common building materials such as brick, steel or plastic. 

LUMBER OR TIMBER?

The words “lumber” and “timber” are often used interchangeably to refer to wood used in construction work, but there has been considerable debate as to which term should apply in a given scenario. Pieces of wood that are smaller than 5 inches wide by 5 inches thick (regardless of length) are generally referred to as lumber. These pieces are machine-planed and sawn to fit certain dimensional specifications (e.g., 2×4″, 2×8″, etc.) and are primarily used in residential construction. Pieces of wood over 5 inches wide by 5 inches thick (regardless of length) are referred to as timber, and any timber pieces that exceed 8″ wide by 8″ thick are referred to as beams. As timber pieces are larger in dimension, they are often used to construct the frames of large structures such as buildings and bridges. Timber is also commonly utilized in large quantities for railroad ties, mine shaft supports and crossbeams on utility poles. Another type of wood commonly used in construction is known as engineered wood. As its name implies, engineered wood is the product of a more intricate fabrication process in which various wood strands, fibers, veneers, or other forms of wood are glued together to form a type of composite material that is used for specific construction applications. Common examples of engineered wood include plywood, glued laminated timber (a.k.a. “glulam”), oriented strand board, fiberboard, and particle board. Engineered wood products are commonly used in a wide variety of residential, commercial and industrial construction projects. 

TYPES OF WOOD

Wood has traditionally been classified into two primary categories: Hardwood (any leaf-bearing tree) and softwood (any cone-bearing tree). As with most other general classifications, this can get somewhat confusing due to the fact that there are some leaf-bearing trees that can have relatively soft wood, while some coniferous trees that can have rather hard wood. Generally speaking, however, hardwoods are by and large considered to be heavier and more dense than softwoods. Hardwoods are commonly used in the construction of walls, ceilings and floors, while softwoods are often used to make doors, furniture and window frames. Some examples of the most popular hardwoods include oak, maple, mahogany, cherry, walnut, and teak. Commonly used softwoods include pine, hickory, beach, ash, birch, and cedar. 

LUMBER GRADES

The National Hardwood Lumber Association (NHLA) of America has created a grading system to rate various types of lumber, primarily based on the amount of defects that can be found in a board. Below is a brief summary of NHLA grades for both hardwood and softwood lumber. Hardwoods 1. First and Seconds (FAS) – This is the highest grade possible for hardwood lumber, and is mainly suited for high-quality furnishings, solid wood mouldings and interior joinery. Contains 83% usable material on one face (minimum 6″ x 8″ board size). 2. Select (Sel) – Also contains 83% usable material, but for a smaller minimum board size (4″ x 6″) than FAS. 3. #1 Common (#1 Com) – Contains 66% usable material on a 3″ x 4″ board face.
4. #2 Common (#2 Com) – Contains 50% usable material on a 3″ x 4″ board face. Softwoods 1. C Select – Almost completely free of all defects; commonly used for cabinets and interior trim 2. D Select – Comparable to C Select, but may contain small knots (no bigger than the size of a dime) 3. 1 Common – Contains small, tight knots that won’t fall out; offers a high-quality knotty appearance (e.g., pine) 4. 2 Common – Very similar to 1 Common, but with slightly larger knots; often used in shelving and paneling 5. 3 Common – Larger knots that what are found in 2 Common; typically used for crates, boxes and fences

BENEFITS OF WOOD IN CONSTRUCTION

Wood carries several benefits that make it an excellent candidate for use in a wide array of construction projects. One such benefit is its thermal properties, which give it an advantage in terms of its resistance to high temperatures. Unlike steel, which can expand or even collapse in high heat, wood actually dries out and becomes stronger as the heat increases. In addition, the heat conductivity of wood is relatively low in comparison to other materials such as aluminum, marble, steel, or glass. This gives wood an advantage in terms of being used in various applications such as matches, hardware equipment handles, wall coverings, and ceilings. Wood also contains highly-sought-after acoustic properties. It can absorb sound and echoes, and is a favorite material of choice for the construction of structures where proper acoustics is important, such as concert halls. Wood is resistant to electrical currents, making it an optimal material for electrical insulation. Another important characteristic of wood is its tensile strength, which is its ability to bend under pressure without breaking. Wood is exceptionally light in proportion to its tensile strength, making it the preferred construction choice for surfaces that take a constant beating such as basketball courts and bowling lanes. Tensile strength is also one of the main reasons for choosing timber as a building material; its remarkably strong qualities make it the perfect choice for heavy-duty building materials such as structural beams. Of the many construction materials that a person can choose from, wood stands out as a unique and amazingly versatile product. Its aesthetic appeal, tensile strength, insulation qualities, and ease of fabrication enable it to remain a favorite choice for use in an extensive array of construction applications.

Ten Benefits of a Cedar Deck

The major ingredient of building a new deck is deciding which decking material to use. While every building material has its pros and cons, you should ideally select the material that suits your particular lifestyle and seamlessly matches your home design. Although Cedar wood decking can be pricey, it offers significant benefits to any renovation or new build. And with routine maintenance, a cedar deck maintains its warm colour and finish for a long time.
  1. Cedar is popular and aesthetically pleasing in all modern builds. A stunning cedar deck is an attractive selling feature and will hold its resale value when listing a home.
  2. Cedar decking won’t warp and split in a high moisture atmosphere like several other decking materials since it naturally repels moisture.
  3. Additionally, Cedar softwood is naturally resistant to insects and rot; therefore, it doesn’t require potentially toxic chemical treatments.
  4. Cedar decking requires less maintenance than certain other decking materials, an advantage to busy homeowners.
  5. The distinctive colour and look of cedar offers a pleasing atmosphere in which to relax and blends in exquisitely with nature.
  6. The aroma of Cedar is truly amazing—much nicer than many man-made decking materials.
  7. Homeowners and builders have the option of staining cedar in any colour of their choice, making it ideal to match with an existing building.
  8. Cedar can be left in its natural state and does not require pre-staining. Homeowners who appreciate the natural aesthetic will be pleased with the rustic appearance of an unstained cedar deck.
  9. Resistant to extreme temperatures and harsh weather conditions, property owners can rest easy knowing the durable cedar deck will still look great over the years with regular maintenance.
  10. The variety of grades in cedar decking boards provide a distinct look that will be unique to each build and not look like anyone else’s deck.
Cedar wood is timeless and organically beautiful with a pleasing scent of the great outdoors. The advantages of a Cedar deck are clear and that’s why homeowners and professionals often choose it over and over again. Undoubtedly, a gorgeous cedar deck will deliver years of enjoyment to you and your family and friends in your outdoor living space. Contact Longhouse today to get started.

The Advantages of Fire Treated Wood

When it comes time to decide what type of material to build with, architects and homebuilders often choose wood mainly because of its aesthetically pleasing look and adaptability in design. Thereafter, they must decide whether or not to purchase fire treated lumber for a project. Undeniably, wood is a naturally beautiful raw material with versatility; therefore, its widely used throughout the world in modern builds. FRTW, or Fire Retardant Treated Wood, is the chemical solution applied for this specific treatment. FRTW is an excellent technique that decreases the chance of a fire burning an entire building. Furthermore, using this type of lumber can help builders surmount restrictions by safety requirements and regulations in regards to potential fire hazards. Wood is a sustainable option in building material and using FRTW makes it a safe, modern choice. Furthermore, there are a number of advantages to selecting lumber processed in this manner.

Advantages of Fire Treated Wood

  • FRTW can be safely used in both interior (inclusive of humid interiors) and exterior builds.
  • Expenditures may also decrease since there will be no need for a sprinkler system in some cases.
  • The smoke impact is substantially reduced when fire treated wood is ignited. 
  • The chemicals used in the process are water-based and non-toxic.
  • Fire treated wood maintains its structural integrity at higher temperatures than steel.
  • Fire Retardant Treated Wood further reduces the speed of combustion by reducing flame travel rate.
  • The costs of FRTW are similar to pre-stained lumber.
  • The treatment lasts as long as the building.
  • Working with this treated wood allows for greater flexibility in designing a building for the architects in possible fire hazard zones.
  • Typical end uses encompass a variety of possiblities: roofing shingles, roof construction, internal wall and ceiling linings, and even scaffolding.
  • FRTW is manufactured in Canada with the utmost of integrity. Therefore, manufacturers are fully supportive of the product.
  • FRTW offers job site convenience in that the wood can be crosscut to length and drilled for holes after treatment, without a loss of its effectiveness.
  • The treatment is not considered hazardous so there need not be any further safeguards taken when working with the material other than the usual dust masks and eye goggle protection.
  • A home or building constructed using fire retardant treated wood will hold its resale value.
Longhouse applies the correct type of fire treatment to lumber in their facility to Canada’s building codes and standards. This allows a wide range of Fire Retardant Treated Wood based products to comply with stringent regulations. Builders choose wood as a renewable, sustainable choice that is also energy efficient to harvest. With over twenty years of experience in applying fire retardant treatments, we have the expertise clients trust.

The Importance of LEED Certification

Building costs are high and affordable housing is a challenge in many areas of our cities and towns. For obvious reasons, inexpensive construction by means of cheap labour and inexpensive materials are often the chosen path. However, those days are quickly disappearing, being replaced with green builds and an eye to a more affordable and energy efficient lifestyle; builds assembled with sustainably-sourced, toxin-free materials, designed for reduced energy consumption in both use and during construction. 

This style of advanced construction follows an assessment for building design and construction. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is a certification program that awards four levels of certification based on a point system. Points are bestowed for energy efficiency, water usage, air quality, and building materials used, in addition for environmental factors, like access to public transportation and responsible land use.

Thankfully, there are increasingly more contractors, architects, and companies getting on board with LEED certification and all the benefits extended to both the company and the individual.

REASONS WHY LEED CERTIFICATION IS IMPORTANT

  1. Pollutants in an unhealthy building, possibly made with toxic materials or made with inadequate ventilation, cause all kinds of respiratory illness and consequently, employee absenteeism. LEED certification standards establish minimum indoor air quality (IAQ) performance. A healthy workplace thereby promotes healthy productivity and well-being of employees.
  2. Another element of a LEED certified build is the use of natural light. Workers are exposed to more natural daylight which makes them more effective and improves quality of sleep at night. It also provides an attractive, bright place to function.
  3. Tenants benefit from reduced living expenses when they invest in a LEED certified build. Savings are achieved through reduced energy and water costs, as well as reduced water and energy consumption with energy efficient appliances.
  4. A LEED certified build retains a higher property value over time than one without.
  5. Tax credits may be available in certain cases.
  6. LEED builds are made with natural, sustainable building material, such as the untreated, completely biodegradable Cedar available from Longhouse. 

Individual well-being is rapidly becoming more important than blind over-production and work demands. Productivity improves in a healthy work atmosphere and home environment. Individuals today want to know how their company is contributing to a healthier, more sustainable future because he or she seeks the same goal.

Indeed, certain architects believe LEED certification is essential for modern builds. Environmentally conscious millennials are eager to not only live in sustainable homes, but also want to work for corporations who’ve adopted green initiatives and committed to LEED certified buildings. Longhouse continues to be involved and supportive of LEED certified projects worldwide and we remain passionate on persisting our journey on the higher road.

Net Zero Houses

Here on the West Coast of British Columbia, and indeed worldwide, sustainability and environmental protection are top of mind with eco-conscious builders and homeowners. Certainly, many of us strive to protect the beauty of our precious environment while pursuing innovative ways to live greener every day of our lives.

Builders and homeowners embrace a greener way of living by supporting the construction of Net Zero Energy homes. These homes are the pinnacle of energy efficiency, designed and constructed to produce as much energy as it consumes annually.

What is Net Zero?

The definition of a Zero Energy Building or Zero Net Energy Building is a structure with zero net energy consumption. In other words, the total amount of energy used by the building each year approximately equals the amount of renewable energy created on site. Consequently, these types of buildings generate a smaller amount of greenhouse gas into the atmosphere than traditional builds. 

MIKE HOLMES: ““Net-zero homes produce as much energy as they consume. Given rising energy costs these homes are becoming increasingly more popular.””
Photo Credit: Joern Rohde, RDC Fine Homes

A further definition, according to Mike Holmes of HGTV online, “A Net Zero home produces its own energy locally and should aim to produce at least as much energy as it consumes. EnerGuide rates the energy performance of the home; the higher the rating, the more efficient the home. The lower the EnerGuide number the better energy performance of the home is. In order for a home to be completely Net Zero, it will most likely need to incorporate solar power or utilize some form of renewable energy source.”

Concerned individuals choose a net zero home build because they’re up to 80% more energy efficient than typical new home builds. They produce as much clean energy as they consume. All this plus a more comfortable living space and reduced future energy costs for the homeowner.

The features that enable a Net Zero Energy Home to do what it does comprises sourcing passive heat from the sun, using air-sourced and ground-sourced heat pumps, as well as the installation of solar panels.

Benefits

There are further benefits to living in a Net Zero Home:

  • All home features work together to minimize the household’s environmental footprint.
  • Comes equipped with water-saving fixtures and appliances.
  • Produces as much clean, renewable energy as the structure consumes.
  • Empowers homeowners to help protect against climate change and preserve our natural resources.
  • Provides a quiet, peaceful living atmosphere due to superior insulation.
  • Provides clean fresh air indoors via a filtration system that reduces allergens and other air pollutants for a healthier living environment.
  • Delivers outstanding year-round comfort with advanced construction methods and materials, in addition to heating, cooling, and ventilation systems that maintain comfortable, consistent temperatures everywhere in the home.
  • Offers durability with high-performance windows, superior insulation in walls and roofs, all built to higher standards than conventional homes.
  • Protects the homeowner from future increases in energy prices.
  • Generates minimal year-round utility bills.
  • Built with an advanced foundation system with superior insulation qualities.

 

Why Choose Net Zero?

Net Zero Houses are important to us for several reasons. For one, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation describes a substantial rebate on your mortgage insurance premium when you invest in a Net Zero Energy Home. Furthermore, they’re not limited to new builds, although it takes some planning, renovating an old home to a net-zero home is possible and the energy savings are worth the effort.

In order to build a net zero home, the Canadian Home Builders Association (CHBA) has a labelling program to guide consumers. They are also a rich source of information to help plan a net zero build.

Longhouse has long been a supporter and partner in a number of sustainable building projects. We are proud to support these types of endeavours and believe they’re a mainstay of our future. If you’re searching for a more efficient, sustainable way of living, a net zero home is a sensible choice. 

New Height Restrictions for Wooden Structures

Timber buildings have been around for centuries. Thankfully, over time, code restrictions have been revised and changed, with concerns of fire safety topmost in many architects’ and builders’ minds. 

Recently

New height restrictions have been introduced for wooden structures in the newest Mass Timber Code Proposals guide. Specifically, Code Change Proposals G75-18, G80-18, and G84-18 deal with tall wood buildings. The three code changes state that height, number of stories, and allowable area, should be reviewed only after one becomes familiar with the types of construction.

In the News

According to a recent news article, ‘Peter Busby designs a 40 storey timber tower proposed for Vancouver’, posted on treehugger.com, a new timber tower is in the works. Peter Busby of Perkins+Will Canada is the designer onboard the proposed green-build project. According to their website, Perkins+Will has one of the highest numbers of ‘Certified Passive House Designers’ of any design firm in North America.

One of the founders of the Canada Green Building Council (CGBC), with which Longhouse remains a member, Busby has a vision towards reducing energy consumption in new builds. To paraphrase, the tower is the tallest Busby thinks can technically be made with wood today. The building is to be predominantly made out of cross-laminated timbers (CLT) and dowel laminated timbers (DLT). This timber is manufactured in British Columbia and culled from damaged trees. Busby is optimistic it can be built between 35-40 stories high.

Future

However, several people doubt the project will in fact go ahead due to the revised building codes. The new codes permit wood structures up to 12 stories with exposed wood elements, and up to 18 stories with wood enclosed in gypsum board. Procedures may be taken that permit variances from the code but could be time-consuming. To date, the tallest wooden skyscraper in Canada is the Brock Commons at UBC, at 18 stories. 

Furthermore, zoning on the site in question has a limit of 14 stories. Unquestionably, every project should be studied to be suitable to the existing neighbourhood. Although wood is having a renaissance, there seems to be much debate about whether the proposed 40 towers is too tall for the site.

Longhouse Specialty Forest Products has played a role in thousands of exciting custom projects worldwide. We’ve had the pleasure of working with several talented individuals in the design and construction industry. Dedicated to sustainable construction methods and growth, in addition to maintaining as tiny of a carbon footprint as possible, we’re keeping a close watch to see how these new height restrictions affect future modern projects.

Longhouse Receives ‘Manufacturer of the Year’ Award

Family owned and operated

Longhouse Specialty Forest Products, located in Parksville, BC, was recently honoured with the title of ‘Manufacturer of the Year’ by the Vancouver Island Construction Association.

The 2019 inaugural Awards Gala, held by VICA, is open to all its members in good standing and intended to formally acknowledge the work members do across Vancouver Island. The panel of judges are comprised of industry professionals from across the Industrial, Commercial, Institutional, and multi-family residential construction sectors. Longhouse received the award specifically for the company’s recent project Pacific Centre Family Services Association in Victoria.

When asked how he feels about receiving the new title, Longhouse owner Brian Jenkins replied “Humbled. We went into it with no expectations. Longhouse manufactures pre-finished/ fire treated high grade lumber products. We are unlike any other forest products company. Our lumber products are not mass produced or from foreign countries. All of our products are sourced locally.”

Longhouse boasts delivering over 14,000 projects globally in the construction and design industry since 1985.

Concerning the project that won them the award, Jenkins says “We work on many projects, and this one in particular was a health centre and it looks fabulous. It was created using sustainable wood products. Unlike other buildings on the market, this one will stand for centuries because of its build and design.”

Longhouse Specialty Forest Products maintains FSC® (Forest Stewardship Council) certification by the Rainforest Alliance since 2007. The company is also a member of the Canada Green Building Council and the Greater Vancouver Home Building Association. Longhouse also belongs to Passive house Canada and the Living Building Challenge Foundation.

Although they specialize in Western Red Cedar, Longhouse manufactures all British Columbia softwood species, such as yellow cypress (cedar), Douglas-fir, Pacific Coast hemlock, and spruce pine fir (SPF). Specialty products manufactured by the company encompass custom cut yellow cedar decking, solid wood flooring, cedar fascia and soffits, different varieties of FSC® certified cedar siding, Japanese grade spruce siding, and Douglas Fir products.

For Longhouse, the award is a meaningful achievement.

“It recognizes Longhouse for being unique in what we do,” says Jenkins, “We are unlike any other company. It shows that our work is finally paying off and being recognized for what we do. Not only that but it will help to create a stronger customer base. People that may not have been familiar to the Longhouse brand, will now have the opportunity to hear of us. We are excited about what the future has in store for us.”

Longhouse would like to give tribute

“To our committed team whereby this award belongs to them equally.  Ken L’Heureux  company millwright of 20 years, and Matt Newton production manager of 15 years, and all of our suppliers who believed in our commitment to value added over the last 30 plus years.”

 

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