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Pacific Canada  + Canada  + Quebec  + Multi-residential Housing  | 
The B.C. government is increasing the maximum height of mass timber buildings by 50%.

B.C. Increases Maximum Height of Mass Timber Buildings

The B.C. government is increasing the maximum height of mass timber buildings by 50%.

Ravi Kahlon, the province’s housing minister, announced that the province intends to raise the maximum height to 18 storeys from 12. The increase is slated to be implemented in building and fire code changes that would allow for more construction using mass timber.

The moves, which could be adopted by spring 2024, will not only apply to housing. Schools, shopping centres, offices and industrial facilities would also be affected. The province said the changes are in the proposal stage and posted for public comment on the Canadian Board for Harmonized Construction Codes website until January 26.

After the comment period ends, the government will decide whether to adopt all changes or hold some back for more technical analysis. Most changes appear likely to be adopted as the government seeks to develop more high-density housing near transit, capitalize on an abundance of timber, support a vibrant wood-products industry and promote sustainability.

B.C. and Quebec have launched a joint task group to develop potential building code revisions that permit more mass timber use across Canada. Upon conclusion of the comment period, a package of proposed code changes will be provided for other provinces and territories to consider adopting.

The changes will also be considered for use in national codes.

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Inside The Story

Ravi KahlonCanadian Board for Harmonized Construction Codes

About Monte Stewart

Monte Stewart serves as Content Director - Canada for Connect Commercial Real Estate. Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Monte provides daily news coverage of major Canadian commercial real estate markets, including Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Calgary. He has written about the real estate sector for various media outlets and Avison Young since the early 2000s. In addition, he has covered sports, general news and business for several leading wire services and publications, including The Canadian Press, The Associated Press, The Calgary Herald, The Globe and Mail, Research Money, The Daily Oil Bulletin, Natural Gas World and The Toronto Star. Monte is active in his community as a youth basketball coach and raises funds for such charitable causes as Movember.

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