Wood mid-rises cause concern.


The Cement Association of Canada (CAC) is raising concerns about wood-framed mid-rise buildings after a massive fire ripped through downtown Kingston in December.

The fire destroyed a wood student residence building under construction and threatened other nearby buildings.

The association is reiterating its call for greater fire safety provisions in the National Building Code of Canada.

"This fire is yet another example of the risks inherent to wood construction, especially during the construction phase," said Michael McSweeney, the association's president and CEO, in a statement. "We are very concerned about the fire safety risks to Canadians-including our first responders. Our building codes shouldn't set just the bare minimum standard, but strive to achieve the gold standard. Canadians should expect nothing less."

Groups like the Canadian Wood Council and the Ontario Home Builders Association are lobbying for amendments to national and provincial building codes that will allow for six-storey wood frame developments. There is a regulation currently capping construction on wood-framed buildings to four storeys.

The Cement Association has...

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