The Wood Innovation & Design Centre (WIDC) in downtown Prince George, British Columbia was completed in October 2014. The Centre utilizes a number of wood species and products from across the province such as Douglas-fir, western red cedar, hemlock, pine and spruce. The building incorporates a structural system that includes a variety of locally manufactured solid engineered wood products including cross laminated timber, glue laminated timber and laminated veneer lumber.
At 97 feet- high (29.5 metres) with six floors and a mechanical penthouse, the WIDC is currently the tallest wood building in Prince George and the tallest contemporary wood building in North America.
Owned by the Province of British Columbia, the building’s main tenant is the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) who will occupy the first, second and third floors, including a lecture theatre on the main level. UNBC is developing two new master’s programs in engineering that are expected to be offered at the WIDC in 2016. A Master of Engineering in Integrated Wood Design and a Master of Applied Science, these programs will allow students to pursue research on wood and other forest products related to future wood structures. The WIDC will also be home to the Emily Carr Centre for Design Innovation and Entrepeneurship which will focus on art and design-based educational programs and activities.
As an innovative demonstration project and a precedent setting building, the WIDC showcases B.C.’s growing expertise in the design and construction of large-scale wood buildings.