Mass Timber Competition


Building to Net-Zero Carbon

Mass timber is a newer category of wood product that is transforming how America builds, and the SLB and USDA Forest Service (USDA) are proud to support the Mass Timber Competition: Building to Net-Zero Carbon.

Designed to expand the use of mass timber in the United States, the competition will showcase mass timber’s application, practicality, commercial viability, and role as a natural climate solution, reducing the carbon footprint of the built environment. The competition will help expand the use of mass timber building solutions and support increased employment in advanced wood products design, engineering, construction, supply chain, and manufacturing sectors.

The SLB and USDA are providing funding for the competition. The funding will support costs associated with the use of mass timber or mass timber hybrid building systems and construction. Funding will also help project teams overcome barriers in adopting newer building materials and systems, most notably the costs of analyzing design and engineering alternatives and verifying that these solutions comply with applicable code(s).

The competition will share any lessons learned, cost analysis, life cycle assessment (LCA) results, and research findings to help support future projects. It will also advance, accelerate, and prove the business case for mass timber use in project types that have not been widely adopted in the U.S., including institutional, industrial or warehouse/distribution centers, educational, and healthcare environments.

Competition Goals

  • Provide grant funds totaling $2,000,000 to support multiple teams with economically viable projects that utilize existing research and/or proven alternative technical solutions and available technical expertise to safely design and construct high-profile mass timber projects in the U.S. that are repeatable and scalable. Projects grants are anticipated to be up to $500,000 each.
  • Showcase the viability, application, cost effectiveness, and carbon reduction and sequestration (embodied and embedded carbon) benefits of mass timber construction in the U.S.
  • Grow the U.S. mass timber and solid-sawn lumber markets and strengthen the domestic mass timber supply chain.
  • Illustrate the direct link between the use of mass timber components and the health and resiliency of U.S. forests, reduction in carbon emissions, sustainable forest management, and economic development opportunities in rural communities.
  • Perform whole building LCA, GHG mitigation, and/or related carbon accounting analysis.


  • For-profit building sector organizations registered in the U.S. (i.e., developers, building owners).
  • Not-for-profit organizations incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation or society formed in the U.S. (i.e., colleges, universities, associations).
  • U.S. local governments (i.e., city, county, state).
  • Native American Tribal governments and organizations.

Eligible Projects and Materials

  • Commercial, institutional, industrial, educational, mixed-use, and affordable multifamily housing developments. Single-family homes are not eligible.
  • Cross-laminated timber (CLT), nail-laminated timber (NLT), glued-laminated timber (glulam), dowel-laminated timber (DLT), products that meet PRG320-19, and other mass timber products as approved by the competition organizers on request. Mixed material (hybrid) solutions that are predominately mass timber components along with other structural materials are also eligible.
  • Evaluation preference will be given to building typologies where mass timber is currently underutilized but has great opportunity, such as buildings in the six- to 18-story range, warehouse distribution facilities, big box retailers, and healthcare. 
  • Timber sourced for the project should demonstrate sustainable forest management that contributes to forest and watershed health. Several approaches are used to ensure sustainable supply of wood products, including federal, state, and local regulations, third party certifications, best management practices, and an emerging ASTM standard.
  • Preference will also be provided for projects that commit to using domestically harvested and manufactured mass timber.


We look forward to receiving proposals in early 2022 and selecting recipients by late Spring or early Summer 2022.

Want to Learn More?

Complete the form below and let us send you more information, including dates and entry procedures, about the Mass Timber Competition: Building to Net-Zero Carbon. Please note, email responses and related Mass Timber Competition communications may come from the SLB, our funded programs, or third-party partners.

Mass Timber Resources

Check out these informational resources to learn more about the possibilities for mass timber.