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April 7, 2022

$115M Wood Innovation Center in Darrington to start this year

Images courtesy of Forterra [enlarge]
Conceptual sketch showing arrival at the CLT facility parking lot and walkway to CLT plaza.

The CLT plant is set to include a plaza offering views of White Horse Mountain.

The Department of Commerce has awarded Forterra's Darrington Wood Innovation Center $1.5 million from its Clean Energy Fund.

The $115 million center, which was announced in 2020, is a collaboration between the town of Darrington, Snohomish County and Forterra. The project sits on a 94-acre campus northwest of Darrington. When complete, the site will be a one-stop shop for the wood products industry and home to engineered timber and modular housing manufacturing companies.

The campus includes a sawmill and kiln factory, CLT plant and a modular fabrication facility.

Clean Energy funds will be used for demonstration of an advanced boiler system that uses wet, low-grade wood biomass. It will be the first of its kind globally to address moisture conditions present in Washington state and will demonstrate forest management practices to maximize low-value biomass for cross laminated timber manufacturing and bioenergy feedstock.

Forterra doesn't have an exact date for when work on the center will begin but expects to break ground on the project this year and hopes to complete work by the end of 2023. Imco Construction is the general contractor. Forterra will manage the construction of the Wood Innovation Center buildings. Mithun is the architect of record for the center.

The innovation center was one of 10 projects in the state to receive Clean Energy Fund grants. These grants, which were established in 2013, are awarded to projects that “advance new or emerging technologies that support Washington state's clean energy goals of reducing carbon emissions, achieving a 100% clean electricity grid, and ensuring an equitable distribution of the health and economic benefits of the clean energy economy.”

Commerce awarded $8.5 million in total in this round of funding. For the full list of projects visit tinyurl.com/commercecleanenergyfund/.

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