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Archive for September 2015

Outdoor space and smart technology rank high in homeowner preferences

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Homeowners continue to prioritize investing in outdoor living spaces and there has been a significant surge in popularity in adding technology and systems that can help automate energy consumption. These findings are from the American Institute of Architects’ (AIA) Home Design Trends Survey covering activity during the second quarter of 2015 that focused on emerging home features: systems, technologies and special function rooms in the home.

“With the tremendous interest in well-designed outdoor living spaces, it’s a pretty strong indication that the days when houses were viewed as a way to flip for a big profit are long gone,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker. “Signifying a renewed interested in practicality and use, demand for mud rooms and dedicated guest rooms are also quite high.”

All of the data from this survey can be access in this infographic.

The survey also found that housing market growth remained positive, but slowing down.

“Conditions remain very positive, but as we might expect at this stage of the cycle, growth is beginning to slow a bit,” said Baker. “Backlogs are still trending up, and are close to being back to where they were before the downturn.  While the individual sectors aren’t accelerating in terms of growth, they are all positive.”

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September 30, 2015 at 7:00 am

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Cross-laminated timber finally produced in U.S.

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A Southern Oregon company has become the first in the U.S. to be certified to produce cross-laminated timber, a product that could provide an economic shot in the arm for rural communities.

Cross-laminated timber (CLT) products will be produced by D.R. Johnson, a firm out of Riddle, Oregon. The material “could make Oregon a supplier for the next generation skyscraper and produce more jobs in rural communities,” according to state economic development officials.

CLT is made by bonding together perpendicular layers of dimensional lumber, such as two-by-fours, to create panels used for walls, floors and roofs. The panels can be up to 13 feet wide, 65 feet long and 15 inches thick.

Advocates say CLT offers the strength of concrete and steel, allowing for its use in the construction of tall buildings, and is cheaper and faster to build with.

It also possesses a “green” benefit, they say: It’s made from a renewable resource and, because wood captures and holds rather than emits carbon dioxide, its use can offset the greenhouse gases expended elsewhere in a building’s construction. The technology also allows the use of smaller pieces of wood that can’t be used in traditional glulam beams.

Although D.R. Johnson is the first — and, so far, only — U.S. company to be certified by the American Plywood Association to produce CLT, the product is already in use in Canada and Europe.

“The market for CLT is growing,” D.R. Johnson President Valerie Johnson said. “We are either under contract or in design conversations with over a dozen projects along the West Coast. Demand is there, and we expect other manufacturers may enter the market soon.”

The company is producing 24-foot-long panels that will be used at four construction projects in Oregon, including at Western Oregon University and the Albina Yard project in northwest Portland.

See the full BendBulletin story here: http://www.bendbulletin.com/localstate/3501486-151/riddle-firm-first-in-nation-certified-for-wood#.

www.drjlumber.com

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September 30, 2015 at 7:00 am

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Furniture manufacturer plans nationwide distribution center in Las Vegas

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The LogistiCenter at Cheyenne, a 381,804 sq. ft. distribution center in Las Vegas. (Source: http://www.dermody.com)

Southern Enterprises of Dallas has agreed to take nearly 150,000 square feet inside Dermody Properties’ LogistiCenter at Cheyenne, a 91-acre, industrial park, Dermody officials announced.

The deal is more than a simple lease. Local brokers say it could also be a small but first step in building up an important, local sector. And it shows that demand for speculative industrial space is as strong as developers have advertised, at least for now.

For Dallas-based Southern Enterprises, which sells through Target, Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Kohl’s and Amazon, demand came from a need to supplement its lone distribution facility in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. The company will fill 25 percent of orders from the local plant, which will employ at least 10 workers. The center will put the company closer to West Coast markets in particular, said Chief Financial Officer Gary Horowitz.

Though the building will serve as a distribution center, having Southern Enterprise here is “a tiny peg in the slot toward bringing manufacturing here,” said Dan Doherty, senior vice president of Colliers International’s local office and a broker for Dermody.

See the full Las Vegas Review Journal story here: http://www.reviewjournal.com/business/furniture-designer-manufacturer-plans-nationwide-distribution-center-las-vegas.

www.seidal.com

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September 30, 2015 at 7:00 am

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Lippert Components adds marine furniture manufacturing

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Lippert Components, following the acquisition of Fort Wayne, Indiana.-based Signature Seating in August, now makes and supplies furniture for freshwater boatbuilders, primarily pontoon boat manufacturers.

The company also now supplies Furrion electronics to boatbuilders and the marine aftermarket.

“LCI is the leading provider of furniture solutions for the towable RV industry and the addition of Signature and its experienced team provides immediate access to the pontoon boat market,” Lippert Components president Scott Mereness said in a statement. “Freshwater boats, and in particular pontoon boats, are a natural extension of our collection of premium RV furniture.”

See the full story here: http://www.tradeonlytoday.com/2015/09/lippert-components-adds-marine-furniture-manufacturing/.

www.lci1.com

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September 30, 2015 at 7:00 am

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AWC applauds Tall Wood Building Competition winners

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The American Wood Council (AWC) has issued the following statement in response to the announcement of the Tall Wood Building Competition winners. The competition is a partnership between the Binational Softwood Lumber Council, Softwood Lumber Board and U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“These winning designs will serve as living case studies on the numerous reasons to build taller with wood,” said Robert Glowinski, CEO and president of AWC. “Beyond its aesthetic qualities, wood is among the most energy-efficient and environmentally friendly of all building materials. Wood products store carbon, keeping it out of the atmosphere indefinitely, thereby reducing a building’s environmental footprint. In addition to the saved environmental costs, using wood in construction is often less expensive than alternatives.

“We’re excited to watch these buildings be built, and in the process, herald a new era in the design and construction of taller buildings. These projects will help demonstrate the range of possibilities and help determine the requirements for this new class of buildings.

www.awc.org

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September 29, 2015 at 7:00 am

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Prison employees arrested for illegally selling inmate-made wooden items

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Three Corrections Corporation of America employees were indicted by the Davidson County, Tennessee grand jury after investigators said the men sold products made in an inmate woodworking class.

Robert Hill, 58, of Lebanon, Stephen Binkley, 65, of Nashville, and Roy Napper, 68, of Old Hickory, were each indicted on two counts of official misconduct and one count of inmate labor violation by custodian, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI).

TBI special agents began investigating a complaint of misuse of inmate labor at the facility at 5115 Harding Place on May 5.Some of the inmates had learned woodworking skills through a Building Trades class and had made products such as wooden plaques and games, according to the TBI.

“During the course of the investigation, agents learned that three individuals who had taught classes at the facility were also part-owners of a wood-working business called Stand Firm Design,” the agency stated in a release Monday. “Agents developed information that from December 2014 through June 2015, some of the products made by the inmates in the Building Trades class were taken from the CCA facility and sold at a flea market as products of Stand Firm Design.’

Investigators believe the men kept profits from the items for themselves and the business.

Binkley, Hill and Napper were all arrested Monday and booked into the Davidson County Jail. The bond was set for $1,000 each.

See the original Tennessean story here: http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/crime/2015/09/15/tbi-3-cca-workers-sold-items-inmate-woodworking-class/72352416/.

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September 29, 2015 at 7:00 am

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Stevens hires Doug Jackson as new sales representative

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Stevens Industries Inc. has introduced Doug Jackson as its new regional sales representative for the Stevens Advantage casework division.  He will be actively pursuing new projects in Chicago and surrounding communities, primarily in the education field.  Jackson comes from the company’s customer service team coordinating orders for international corporations and managing projects for national dental clinics and childcare facilities.

Of his new position, Jackson says, “I am excited about the new opportunities this position presents.  Working one-on-one with customers to ensure the best results for their projects is incredibly rewarding.  I look forward to spending time in the field meeting with architects and general contractors.”

www.stevensind.com

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September 29, 2015 at 7:00 am

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