A Southern Oregon company is the first in the nation to produce a new kind of timber product.
Cross-laminated timber is often described as a product that builders could use to construct wooden skyscrapers. Manufacturers currently make wood paneling by gluing together superdense layers of lumber pieces.
Cross laminated timber, or CLT, is made by cross-hatching timber pieces. It's so strong that proponents say it can replace steel or concrete in new buildings.
D.R. Johnson Lumber Co. in Riddle, Oregon, is the first U.S. company to be certified to produce cross-laminated timber.
Ryan Frank, communications manager at Business Oregon, said he thinks the new industry could especially benefit small communities.
"The potential for cross-laminated timber is creating jobs in rural Oregon by creating a product that we could sell in other states and countries," said Frank.
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is a strong supporter of the technology. Her office is currently holding a design competition to encourage more developers to use the new wood product.