Wood: A Healthy Building Choice

    VANCOUVER, Sept. 2 /CNW/ - The focus of green building designs is often
on energy savings yet there are many other benefits - such improving the well
being of occupants.
    "If you want a building that is a healthy place to live, work, play or
study, wood is the natural choice," says Mary Tracey, Executive Director BC
Wood WORKS! "Wood designs use more natural products, and make great use of
natural light. They look good, feel good, have better air quality, and lead to
fewer health-related complaints."
    The Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre in northern Ontario was
the first hospital in Canada to gain approval for the use of wood as a primary
structural element in its main public area. Wood was chosen for its
non-institutional character, and to evoke optimism and cheerfulness.
    Tye Farrow of Salter Farrow Pilon Architects, who wanted a warmer look
when he designed 315-bed acute care health science centre, explains: "There's
something as a result of the wood that resonates as an aesthetic element but
is probably comforting as well."
    Kasian Architecture used indigenous wood species and wood technologies to
show support for the local forest industry when it designed the Northern
British Columbia Health Sciences Centre - and won the institutional design
award in the 2006 British Columbia Wood Design Competition.
    There are countless reasons why wood is a good choice for any new
structure or renovation. Wood is a natural material that generates positive
feelings because of its warm and natural attributes. Studies have shown wood
buildings promote productivity and performance, and reduce incidences of
    Wood products can improve air quality by moderating indoor humidity, and
wood floors minimize the accumulation of dust and microbes. A well-designed
wood structure helps to attract desirable tenants for both residential and
commercial buildings.
    A case study of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre is
included in the outstanding wood buildings case publication posted at

For further information:

For further information: Mary Tracey, Executive Director BC Wood WORKS!,
mtracey@wood-works.ca or 1-877-929-9663 ext 1

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