Construction of mid-rise wood frame buildings in Ontario could soon become reality.
Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli announced that his private members’ bill -- Bill 13, the Ontario Forestry Industry Revitalization Act -- passed second reading at Queen's Park with all-party support.
“This is a huge step forward towards providing a much-needed boost to the Northern Ontario economy,” said Fedeli, who said the matter now goes before the finance and economic affairs committee.
The bill aims to amend the Ontario Building Code to allow wood frame construction of buildings of up to six storeys instead of the current four. Fedeli's bill garnered from the Ontario Home Builders Association, the Canadian Wood Council and Northern Ontario municipal groups.
Fedeli said it could create a larger domestic market for Northern Ontario wood products while helping to reduce urban sprawl in southern Ontario cities.
The same legislation made died last year awaiting passage when the McGuinty government prorogues the Ontario legislature.
“Support for this legislation and this type of construction option is growing, and with National Building Code changes coming, the timing is perfect for Ontario to move forward on six-storey wood buildings,” said Fedeli.