Program Overview

Planning and delivery of the Wood First program is a collaborative effort involving the building construction industry, government and the forest sector. Based on recommendations from an advisory group representing a cross-section of primary and secondary manufacturing industries and wood product end-use sectors, FII develops an investment plan that allocates funding on an annual basis.

Activities under the Wood First program are delivered primarily through third-party organizations under a cost-sharing framework between FII, the Federal Government and industry. Initiatives are based on the understanding that long-term sustainability of the forest economy includes actively maintaining, creating and diversifying demand for BC forest products.

Photo: The University of British Columbia’s Centre for Advanced Wood Processing | Credit: Brudder Productions, courtesy naturallywood.com

Program Objectives

Through our Wood First program, FII seeks to:

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Grow the culture of living and building with wood in BC and beyond.

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Maximize the appropriate use of wood in public and private projects.

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Strengthen BC’s capacity to produce competitive wood-based products and building systems that create and respond to market demand.

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Accelerate adoption of existing and emerging wood-based products and building systems.

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Position BC as a world leader in sustainable and innovative wood-based products and building systems in design, production and application.

Funding Process

Each year FII manages a Call for Proposals for the Wood First program, which opens in late fall. Though this year’s call is now closed, we invite you to review our process and eligibility information in preparation for next year.

1.

Please review all eligibility requirements below carefully to determine whether your organization may apply for funding.

2.

All applicants are strongly encouraged to carefully review the Wood First Investment Plan and 3-Year Strategic Plan below.

3.

After reviewing our eligibility requirements and applicant resources, please set up a user account within our Recipient Funding Management System below, where you may review further details on our funding process and submit your application when the call opens in fall 2021.

4.

If you wish to receive an email notification when our 2022/23 Call for Proposals opens, please email us at info@bcfii.ca.

Eligibility

Please review FII’s eligibility information below to determine if you may apply for funding. Please note, FII does not provide loans, grants or subsidies. Funding is not meant to support an individual firm’s activities but rather to benefit sub-sectors or the BC forest sector as a whole.

Those who are eligible to apply for funding under our Wood First program include:

  • Not-for-profit groups or associations representing multi-company interests and serving the objectives of a large geographic area or the majority of producers of a specific species or product category
  • Academic institutions
  • Not-for-profit research institutions
  • First Nations regional Tribal Councils and Indigenous non-profit organizations
  • Government Ministries

Applicant Information

FII provides guidance and support to applicants for its annual Call for Proposals. We hope you find the below documents helpful in developing compelling business cases for funding that meet the criteria of FII and its funding partners.

If you have read these documents, as well as all process and eligibility information and would like to apply for funding during our next intake, please set up an account with our Recipient Funding Management System at the bottom of this page. Once registered, you will have access to additional information and resources to help you with your application.

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Wood First 3-Year Strategic Plan 2020-2023

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Wood First Investment Plan 2021/22

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Current Wood First Recipients

At FII, we are proud to support a wide variety of organizations within the forest, design and construction industries. We invite you to browse our current Wood First funding recipients.

Featured Projects

Hockey players at Upper Skeena Recreation Centre, Hazelton, B.C. | Photos: Ema Peter Photography, courtesy Hemsworth Architecture

Hazelton shows how building with wood creates community

Hockey players at Upper Skeena Recreation Centre, Hazelton, B.C. | Photos: Ema Peter Photography, courtesy Hemsworth Architecture

Reducing Barriers

When the Village of Hazelton had to replace its 40-year-old arena due to safety concerns, they knew they wanted to build a centre not only for the community, but with the community. Using an FII-funded, BC Wood 2014 report called BC Wood Arenas — Design and Construction of Wood Recreational Facilities as a guide, the community was able to easily build a new recreation centre with wood. Local labour built the prefabricated wood wall and roof panels on site, and the wood roof is supported by glue-laminated timber beams and columns sourced from BC. FII and BC Wood produced a video on the project — Upper Skeena Rec Centre: Building a Community — with a social media campaign to promote the good news story.

View the video at naturallywood.com

Reducing Barriers

FII supported several initiatives in 2019/20 to deal with issues hindering greater use of mass timber and engineered wood products. These included research on specific technical issues as well as reports to broaden the knowledge base for designing and building mass timber and taller wood projects.

Highlights include:

  • Fire performance: FPInnovations completed two projects—one on prefabricated mass timber-cement board flooring, and a second regarding fire safety performance when mass timber surfaces in concealed spaces are exposed (current guidelines require that mass timber surfaces are covered with gypsum board).
  • Nail-laminated timber systems: UBC developed guidelines for a mass timber diaphragm (load-bearing) system for wall or floor use using nail-laminated timber.
  • Prefabricated modular components: UBC undertook research on monocoque behavior in mass timber modules. Monocoque refers to a building system where the exterior wall supports the structure, as in a shipping container.
  • Braced frame system for tall timber buildings: UNBC conducted research related to developing guidelines for timber-steel bracing systems to ensure seismic performance consistent with Canadian design and construction practice.
    View this research at research.thinkwood.com

Cover of report: Wood, Well-being and Performance: The Human and Organizational Benefits of Wood Buildings.

Mass timber research highlights

Cover of report: Wood, Well-being and Performance: The Human and Organizational Benefits of Wood Buildings.

To grow the knowledge base for designing and building mass timber and taller wood projects, FII funded extensive research in 2019/20, including:

  • A summary of world-wide research into biophilic construction (designs that emphasize natural elements, including the extensive use of wood products)
  • Design solutions adapting mass timber engineering to healthcare facilities
  • A review of potential options to mitigate issues raised by the finance and insurance sectors regarding wood use in larger projects
  • A study to identify technical or other impediments to using hem-fir in mass timber products

Construction Foundation of BC’s Skills Ready for Wood Initiative | Photo: Construction Foundation of BC.

Promoting careers in the wood sector

Construction Foundation of BC’s Skills Ready for Wood Initiative | Photo: Construction Foundation of BC.

With shifting industry requirements and many baby boomers entering retirement, the wood construction sector offers extensive career opportunities for young people. To help meet this demand, in 2019/20, FII supported the development of the Construction Foundation of BC’s Skills Ready for Wood Initiative.

The program engages youth in a meaningful way to support the exploration of careers in the wood construction industry. The programming includes showcases in areas where there are active wood manufacturing industries and an augmented reality app that gives students the ability to learn more about products and career paths in the industry.

For an overview of our recipient projects completed in 2019/20, please download our Year in Review

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