Element5 plans big CLT plant for St. Thomas. Ont.
Building upon the success of its existing Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) plant and related engineering team in Quebec, mass timber manufacturer Element5 will open a second, much larger facility in St. Thomas, Ont. in December of 2020.
The new 125,000 sq. ft., $50M facility will house a technologically advanced, fully automated CLT and glulam production line, produce up to 45,000 cubic metres of CLT and glulam annually, and employ 50 full-time staff. It is expected that an additional 240 new jobs in related manufacturing, sawmill, transportation and logging sectors will be result from the operation of this new facility.
CLT is an engineered wood product comprised of massive, solid wood panels up to 12’ wide, 53’ long, and 14” thick, made by cross-laminating and bonding multiple layers of dimensional lumber. The panels are structural, used as floors, walls and roof elements, and are an environmentally friendly alternative to concrete and steel.
CLT is what makes tall wood buildings possible because of the structural strength of each panel. An appeal of mass timber buildings is the exposed wood on the interior. They are prefabricated using high tech equipment, then shipped to site for rapid assembly. They’re cheaper to build, faster to construct and more importantly, they’re an excellent solution to the world’s C02 issue because of the carbon-sequestering properties of wood.
According to Element5 Founder, Patrick Chouinard, the company is “perfectly situated to help change the way in which buildings are being constructed for the better and in doing so, make a positive contribution to the environment and future generations.”
The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry recently announced their support of Element5’s new plant in the form of a grant of just under $5 million.
Element5, which has offices in Montreal and Toronto, was founded in 2015 and opened its first CLT plant in Ripon, Quebec in 2017. The company specializes in the design, fabrication and assembly of contemporary timber structures. It works with solid wood, the world’s most flexible and only renewable building resource.