Interfor’s Grand Forks mill taking part in tree house building challenge

Grand Forks' Interfor mill will be participating in a tree house competition amongst the province’s biggest mills and architects.

Above is a rendering of Michael Green’s playhouse design for Canfor’s Playhouse Challenge.

Above is a rendering of Michael Green’s playhouse design for Canfor’s Playhouse Challenge.

International Forest Products Limited’s (Interfor) mill in Grand Forks will be participating in a provincial tree house competition amongst the province’s biggest mills, architects and builders.

In it’s first year, Canfor’s Playhouse Challenge was designed to be a collaborative challenge between companies in the forestry industry.

Amanda Ribeiro, media relations co-ordinator for Laura Ballance Media Group Inc., said, “Canfor has challenged B.C.’s top forestry companies to team up with architects and builders across the province to create children’s playhouses. These playhouses will be auctioned off to corporate donors and donated to children’s charities across the province.”

Ribeiro noted that all money raised would go towards Habitat for Humanity Canada.

“Interfor has a mill in Grand Forks and will be one of the big forestry companies who will be participating,” she added. “They will be on display during PNE (Pacific National Exhibition in Vancouver, B.C.) so people can see the finished playhouse.”

Interfor Vice-President Steven Hofer noted that though Interfor has nine mills across British Columbia, Washington and Oregon, only the Canadian mills would be participating.

“What we’re trying to do is provide a broad base of material that reflects the very diverse group of lumber products that our company manufactures,” he said.

Interfor has been paired with architect Michael Green Architecture Inc. and builder Blackfish Homes and Construction Limited.

“Michael Green is one of the most renowned international architects that focus on the use of wood, both in residential and commercial applications,” Hofer explained. “Michael has a preliminary design for the Interfor playhouse and we’re just fine-tuning the design and the material requirements at this point.”

Hofer also noted Blackfish Homes is one of the most reputable builders in the Lower Mainland and will execute the building of the playhouse designed by Michael Green.

“The playhouses are really meant to showcase wood products that are manufactured in B.C. in a creative and fun way,” Hofer said. “It’s going to be a great environment in the PNE where the kids who visit the fair will have a chance to experience all the hard work and creativity that has gone into the design and construction.”

He added, “It’s a great initiative, where both the playhouses will be further utilized long-term by children across British Columbia, as well as proceeds to be used from Habitat for Humanity and their various initiatives.”

Materials from Interfor will be shipped to North Vancouver, where Blackfish Homes is located, and the playhouse will be constructed there.

There are eight different teams in total, with eight participating forestry companies, eight architects, and eight builders.

The completed playhouses can be viewed at the PNE grounds during fair time, from Saturday, Aug. 18 to Monday, Sept. 3.