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Green Construction through Wood (GCWood) Program

Funding opportunity – closed

The GCWood Program is not accepting requests for funding at this time.

The Green Construction through Wood (GCWood) Program encourages the greater use of wood in construction projects and supports Canada’s transition to a low-carbon economy. The program brings awareness to and increases capacity for innovative tall wood buildings, timber bridges and low-rise wood buildings.

The GCWood program provides non-repayable contributions of up to 100% of a project’s eligible incremental costs for the demonstration of innovative uses of wood products and systems. The funding offsets the cost of being the “first mover” of novel engineered wood projects. Funding also supports the development of knowledge and tools to support the success of future projects.

Knowledge and information developed using GCWood funding is required to be made available via a creative commons approach to allow broad sharing with the design and construction communities.

Our goals

The GCWood program supports Canada’s transition to a more wood-inclusive construction industry by funding projects that encourage:

  • greater adoption and commercialization of wood-based products in the construction of innovative tall wood buildings, timber bridges, and low-rise wood buildings
  • replication of innovative non-traditional wood-based buildings and timber bridges;
  • research that addresses the gap in technical information needed to facilitate revisions to the National Building Code of Canada to allow taller and larger wood buildings.

Benefits of GCWood-funded projects

Environmental benefits of working with wood include:

  • reduced GHG emissions from renewable and sustainable resources
  • innovative energy-efficient building designs

Communities will benefit from:

  • new jobs and development opportunities
  • more options and affordable housing for home buyers
  • increased market opportunities for rural and Indigenous communities dependent on forestry activities

Companies will benefit from:

  • new revenues
  • a reduction in the incremental cost of using wood
  • new or diversified building portfolios
  • updated building codes that allow taller and larger wood buildings

History of the Program

The GCWood program was announced in Budget 2017 with $39.8 million in funding available over four years, to support projects and activities that increase the use of wood as a green building material.

The program builds on the success of the Tall Wood Building Demonstration Initiative (TWBDI). Between 2013 and 2017, the Government of Canada invested $5 million through the TWBDI to demonstrate the commercial viability of tall wood building construction.

Two buildings were completed through TWBDI funding:

  • the Origine building in Quebec; at 13 storeys, the tallest all-wood condominium building in North America in 2017
  • the Brock Commons Tallwood House student residence, University of British Columbia; at 18 storeys, the tallest hybrid wood building in the world when completed in 2017

The first request for Expressions of Interest (EOI) by the GCWood program targeted tall wood building projects (10 storeys and up) and was open from October 6 to December 6, 2017.

The program’s second EOI targeted low-rise non-residential buildings (commercial/industrial and office/institutional buildings with a maximum of four storeys) and was open from September 10 to December 3, 2018.

The program’s third EOI targeted timber bridges (traffic and pedestrian bridges with a minimum span of 20 metres) and was open from November 18, 2018 to April 8, 2019.

Contact the GCWood team to join our mailing list and receive information about the GCWood program

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