The B.C. Liberal government hopes to have something more specific to announce this summer about its promised Wood Innovation and Design Centre, earmarked for the city’s downtown.
The centre, meant as a showcase for wood buildings and possibly a home to engineering students, was first promised by the Liberals more than two years ago under then-premier Gordon Campbell.
New Premier Christy Clark endorsed the idea as an element in her successful leadership campaign earlier this year.
“We’re making good headway and hope to have some more kind of announceables coming up this summer,” said Jobs, Tourism and Innovation Minister Pat Bell, Prince George-Mackenzie MLA.
But exactly what the centre will look like, or what will be its exact purpose, have not be fully fleshed out yet.
What is known is the building remains earmarked for downtown.
Bell said he and Solicitor General Shirley Bond, MLA for Prince George-Valemount, continue to believe the centre can grow wood construction of larger buildings, but also help revitalize the downtown.
“I continue to believe the downtown is the place for it to be,” said Bell.
There are a long list of elements being considered for the centre.
Bell would like to see a tall wood building, possibly using cross-laminated timbers. The large panels are constructed out of boards laminated in layers of opposite direction used more commonly in Europe.