Introducing Millions to Mass Timber and Sustainable Forestry in Georgia
Why this Project Matters
Mass timber is an engineered wood product that allows architects, developers, and engineers to use wood as a primary construction material in mid- and high-rise buildings. Demand is growing for mass timber, but the public, by and large, still doesn’t appreciate the full range of possibilities and benefits associated with mass timber construction. Trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere as they grow, sequestering and storing the carbon while producing oxygen—this helps address climate change and improves air quality. Forests provide many other benefits, including clean air and water, habitat for wildlife, commercially valuable products like wood, and employment for local communities. This project will use biophilic design, which connects people to nature through the built environment, to give urban dwellers mental and physical health benefits by greening a traditionally grey environment. Plus, mass timber will store carbon in the building—the built environment generates 40% of annual global CO2 emissions. The Phoenix and mass timber buildings like it that feature SFI‑certified wood provide an opportunity for urban dwellers, architects, and construction professionals to learn more about the benefits of mass timber.
How This Project Is Showcasing Mass Timber in Georgia
The Georgia Forestry Foundation will build the Phoenix, an educational mass timber display at Ponce City Market in Atlanta. The Phoenix is both an art and architectural piece and an educational display, which will educate more than 3.5 million annual visitors to Ponce City Market about mass timber, the sustainability benefits of mass timber, and sustainable forest management in the US South. Featuring SFI-certified wood throughout, the Phoenix will increase awareness of the climate-related benefits of choosing building materials from sustainably managed forests by educating millions of visitors from across the country.
As part of the construction of the Phoenix, Jamestown and Ponce City Market are currently working to redesign the Yard, the space on the property where the Phoenix will be installed, to make it a mass timber destination in the city. The Georgia Forestry Foundation will also be hosting a series of events coinciding with the installation of the Phoenix event. These events will be targeted to the architecture, engineering, and construction community, and other leaders across the state.
The SFI Community Grant Program is supporting this project along with sustainable forestry experts from an SFI-certified organization and representatives from the mass timber industry.
This partnership includes an SFI-certified organization, state forestry representatives, designers, and real estate professionals.
- Project lead: Georgia Forestry Foundation
- Sustainable Forestry Initiative
- Jamestown Timberland (SFI-certified organization)
University of Miami School of Architecture—Into the Woods: A Carbon Story
Michigan State University’s Forest Carbon and Climate Program—E-Learning Unit on Carbon and Climate Benefits in Well-Managed Forests
University of Idaho—Demonstrating Benefits of SFI-Certified Wood in a Mass Timber Arena
Mississippi Forest Foundation—Mississippi State University Architecture Students Gain Valuable Mass Timber Knowledge
Mississippi Forestry Foundation—TIMB(R): Timber Innovations for Mississippi Buildings Reimagined
SFI and green buildings