An effort to develop and broaden Oregon’s growing mass timber industry received a financial boost Sept. 2 with $41.4 million in U.S. Economic Development Administration funding to the Oregon Mass Timber Coalition, the Port of Portland announced Sept. 2.
The coalition consists of the Port of Portland, Business Oregon, Oregon Department of Forestry, the Department of Land Conservation and Development and the TallWood Design Institute.
The funding is to further university research about using mass timber in housing, help the port develop a factory aimed at making mass timber housing, rev up public-private partnerships that would nurture job creation and mass timber use for housing, among other initiatives.
The port said that it plans to use the funding to improve the site for a future factory at Terminal 2 in Northwest Portland to generate mass timber housing. Mass timber is “an advanced engineered wood product that is an alternative to the use of concrete and steel in multi-story buildings,” according to the port.
“This is a transformational moment for Oregon,” port Executive Director Curtis Robinhold said. “The project will create rural and urban jobs with products grown and manufactured right here in Oregon. The innovations will enable production of high-quality building products from low-quality wood. This will increase housing, provide jobs and promote forest health. That means more homes at lower costs, new workforce opportunities and more climate-resilient communities.”