Tallest wood condo building built in Quebec
August 5, 2017
Twelve-storey wood condo tower takes shape in Quebec City.
North America’s tallest wood residential building is nearing completion in Quebec, but a planned University of British Columbia student housing project may put it in the shade by four to six floors.
Origine, a 13-storey tower in Quebec City's Pointe-aux-Lièvres eco-district, is built with 12 wood floors above a one-storey concrete foundation. Cross-laminated lumber is its primary building material.
The building has 94 condominiums, with prices starting at $189,900 for a 592-square-foot one-bedroom. It was designed by Yvan Blouin Architects and jointly developed by EBC Inc., Synchro Immobilier and Nordic Structures.
The project was partly funded with $1.2 million from Natural Resources Canada under its Tall Wood Building Demonstration Initiative, a program that encourages the construction of higher wood buildings to promote Canadian wood products.
A tall wood building is lighter than the weight of a building using traditional materials, which reduces the cost of a building’s foundations, and using wood products can help cities reduce their environmental footprint and help mitigate the effects of climate change, proponents claim.
Not all are sold on tall wood buildings, however.
The Canadian Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute says tall wood buildings are more prone to fires and have higher on-going maintenance costs than concrete.
Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia building codes all allow wood structures higher than six floors.
In Vancouver, the University of B.C. recently called for architectural tenders for a wooden high-rise tower of from 16 floors to 18 floors, which would make it the tallest residential wood building in North America.