Element5 to open Mass Timber Factory in St. Thomas, Ontario

Building upon the success of its existing Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) plant and related engineering team in Quebec, mass timber manufacturer Element5 will open a second, much larger facility in St. Thomas, Ontario in December of 2020.

The new 125,000 sq. ft., $50M facility will house a technologically advanced, fully automated CLT and glulam production line, produce up to 45,000 cubic metres of CLT and glulam annually, and employ 50 full-time staff. It is expected that an additional 240 new jobs in related manufacturing, sawmill, transportation and logging sectors will be result from the operation of this new facility.


CLT is an engineered wood product comprised of massive, solid wood panels up to 12’ wide, 53’ long, and 14” thick, made by cross-laminating and bonding multiple layers of dimensional lumber. The panels are structural, used as floors, walls and roof elements, and are an environmentally friendly alternative to concrete and steel.

CLT is what makes tall wood buildings possible because of the structural strength of each panel. An appeal of mass timber buildings is the exposed wood on the interior. They are prefabricated using high tech equipment, then shipped to site for rapid assembly.  They’re cheaper to build, faster to construct and more importantly, they’re an excellent solution to the world’s C02 issue because of the carbon-sequestering properties of wood.


According to Element5 Founder, Patrick Chouinard, “We are perfectly situated to help change the way in which buildings are being constructed for the better and in doing so, make a positive contribution to the environment and future generations.”

The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry recently announced their support of Element5’s new plant in the form of a grant of just under $5 million. The announcement was led by four Ontario’s Minister’s on July 23, 2019 at Highbury Industrial Park, the site of the future factory.

“Our government’s open for business and open for jobs approach is restoring Ontario’s competitiveness as a place for businesses to invest, innovate and create jobs,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. “Element5’s new facility will create opportunities for local families, new markets for the forestry sector and reinforce Ontario’s reputation for manufacturing innovation. It’s a project we are proud to support.”


In 2018, Element5 formed a Partnership with WRC Timber Inc. which together with its First Nations and local community partners owns two sawmills in Northwestern Ontario, along with a Sustainable Forest License. 

Mr. Frank Dottori, OC, former Chairman of WRC Timber Inc. is renowned as an innovator in the forestry sector and believes in the future of mass timber. He notes that together, Element5 and WRC Timber Inc. now control their supply chain from forest floor through to finished manufactured product. “We’re able to produce exceptional quality FSC Certified lumber in the unique format required to produce CLT, streamline material flow and efficiency between facilities, thereby reducing costs, and adding significant value.” 


Element5 specializes in the design, fabrication and assembly of contemporary timber structures. It works with solid wood, the world’s most flexible and only renewable building resource.

Element5 is unlike any other firm in the sector. It is a dedicated team of designers, engineers, craftspeople and assembly experts. It serves a community of forward-thinking architects, engineers, owners, developers, and general contractors, providing timber construction cost consulting, design consulting, engineering, fabrication and assembly services. The open, cooperative, integrated project delivery approach ensures high precision timber structures.

Founded in 2015, with offices in Toronto and Montreal, Element5 is a leader in the mass timber construction revolution. Timber is the essential building material of the 21st century. The company strives to make positive contributions to communities, the environment and future generations.