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Kotek sees ‘mass timber’ homes being built quickly

By Tim SteeleLisa Balick,


PORTLAND, Ore. ( KOIN ) — Gov. Tina Kotek took a closer look at production underway in Portland for a new type of modular home that could end up creating new homes in record time.

It’s a project with state and federal money to make homes out of what’s called “mass timber” — thick, compressed layers of wood constructed into panels — and get them built and in place in just a few months.

The Oregon legislature approved $5 million a while back for the Port of Portland and Hacienda Community Development to build 6 prototypes from studios to 3-bedrooms. Insulation will go on the outside of these buildings, then the prototypes will be trucked or barged to communities such as Otis and Talent where families lost their homes.

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Families will move in this summer and the homes will be monitored for durability and their ability to create hundreds of these homes.
A mass timber modular home supported by Gov. Tina Kotek, January 27, 2023 (KOIN)

Kotek, who is a strong supporter of this project, looked at the homes currently under construction.

The hope is that if the homes hold up in areas from the coast to central Oregon more could quickly be built, even multi-family units. But the governor is quick to say it’s just one part of the solution of not enough housing — but is not a replacement for traditional housing.

The mass plywood being used is from a mill in Lyons, southeast of Salem.

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