Tag: Wisconsin Urban Wood

The Greenfield, WI, Urban Wood Model

Greenfield, WI, a Tree City USA, has developed the Greenfield Model to repurpose trees removed by the city into lumber and other value-added products. The Greenfield Model is based on the Milwaukee Model and consists of three key players: the city, a container company and a medium-sized sawmill.

The model in use begins with training city tree crews in tree removal practices that that preserve their wood whenever possible. Greenfield estimates that it up to 30% of its tree removals are eligible for milling at Kettle Moraine Hardwoods, its sawmill partner. Sawn and dried lumber is sold to area companies and individuals. The other trees are used for things like pallets, mulch, biofuel, animal bedding, and firewood.

Read more about this Wisconsin Urban Wood success story on the Urban Wood Network’s website.

The GM began as a project between Wisconsin Urban Wood and the City of Greenfield and was facilitated by a 2016 grant from the WIDNR Urban Forestry Division.



Wisconsin Urban Forest Fest Set for Sept. 15

 

Wisconsin Urban Wood (WUW), in partnership with the USDA Forest Service and the Lynden Sculpture Garden, will present the 2018 Urban Forest Fest 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, September 15 at the Lynden Sculpture Garden in Milwaukee. The event is sponsored by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC). Urban Forest Fest is an event to connect the public to the urban forest and its products.

Many people forget that wood comes from trees; Urban Forest Fest will make the connection between neighborhood trees and the wood products people use on a daily basis by telling the tree-to-table story.

Planned activities and exhibits include the Wisconsin Arborist Association Kids’ Climb, a sawmill demonstration, WUW members’ wood products and services, WEDC and the USDA Forest Service, along with music and food.

More than 500 people attended the 2016 Urban Forest Fest. View invitation to exhibit at the Fest.

The Lynden Sculpture Garden is located at 2146 W. Brown Deer Road, Milwaukee.

Save the Date: Urban Wood Symposium
Wisconsin Urban Wood also is in the planning stages of an Urban Wood Symposium geared for architects and designers, as well as municipal professionals including city foresters, park directors, public works managers, etc. The one-day program will feature a key-note address by Jessica Simons, representative of the Michigan Urban Wood Network and Michigan state lead for the Urban Wood Network. The event is tentatively planned for Thursday, Nov. 8 in the Madison or Milwaukee area.



Wisconsin Urban Wood Graces Ortho’s Office

The reception area of Bubon Orthodonists in Milwaukee has a decidedly local flavor, and for good reason. The backdrop of the reception counter is wall cladding made with Wisconsin urban wood.

The reception area was designed by Rick Pipek of in.studio architecture also of Milwaukee.

Wudeward Urban Forest Products, a member of Wisconsin Urban Wood, furnished the high-quality urban wood planks used in the project.

Read more about this project.

Note: Wudeward owner Dwayne Sperber bill be a featured presenter of “The Urban Wood Revolution Is NOW! Come Join the Movement” seminar scheduled for Aug. 24 at the International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta. Lean more.

 



Wisconsin Urban Wood Signs on as Wisconsin DNR Green Tier Charter

Secretary's Director JD Smith, left, and State Forester Fred Souba Jr., right, celebrate the signing of a Green Tier charter with Wisconsin Urban Wood's Executive Director Twink Jan-McMahon (Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR)

Secretary’s Director JD Smith, left, and State Forester Fred Souba Jr., right, celebrate the signing of a Green Tier charter with Wisconsin Urban Wood’s Executive Director Twink Jan-McMahon
(Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR)

MADISON, WI – Improving urban forest management practices took a step forward Friday with the signing of a Green Tier charter by Wisconsin Urban Wood and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

Wisconsin Urban Wood is a network of independent businesses and nonprofit organizations that promotes the utilization of urban wood. As a network, WUW is instrumental in working to keep urban ash trees from simply being chipped to minimize the spread of emerald ash borer. The group also works to connect the supply of the wood to those who can turn the logs into a valuable commodity. In addition, WUW promotes the societal environmental and economic value of urban wood to communities and property owners across Wisconsin.

“We are glad to be partnering with Wisconsin Urban Wood in its mission to help turn quality timber cut from urban trees into usable lumber, furniture, flooring and other valuable wood products,” said DNR’s Secretary Cathy Stepp.

The celebration, held today at Prima II Apartments in Fitchburg, culminated with the signing of an environmental results Charter by Wisconsin Urban Wood’s Executive Director Twink Jan-McMahon and DNR Secretary’s Director JD Smith. Those in attendance included WUW partners, arborists, representatives from the WI Urban Forestry Council, city of Madison, DNR Forestry staff and Avante Properties, who have incorporated urban wood in their apartment designs.

The WUW Charter provides value to Wisconsin by:

  • supporting WUW to serve as a champion for urban wood and act as a connection between the traditional and urban wood industries, municipalities, counties and end users;
  • filling critical roles on committees and advisory teams;
  • collaborating on initiatives to seek and address current or emerging issues affecting urban wood utilization in Wisconsin and to provide training when needed; and
  • providing urban forest owners with a network of arborists who are practicing sound business management practices by following WUW governing documents and DNR’s best management practices, and guidelines,

“WUW is pleased to serve as an urban wood champion for the DNR,” said WUW’s Jan-McMahon. “We look forward to building on our mutual efforts to promote urban wood utilization across the state for the sake of Wisconsin urban forests and their communities.”

More details about Wisconsin Urban Wood and Green Tier can be found the on the DNR’s Green Tier website. Green Tier is a voluntary program administered by the DNR. Under this program, DNR works with entities who conduct their business with beyond compliance efforts and continually look for ways to improve. Currently there are 82 participants with 248 facilities in the program along with six Green Tier Charters.

Check out the Wisconsin Urban Woods Green Tiers Charter.



Cover Treatment for Wisconsin Urban Wood

The rise and growth of Wisconsin Urban Wood is the cover story of the Winter 2017 edition of Your Family. 

Twink Jan-McMahon, executive director of Wisconsin Urban Wood, graces the cover. She and several members of WUW, discuss how the group got started and how it has grown to more than 30 members and counting. The article notes several benefits of repurposing urban trees including carbon sequestration, supporting local businesses and economies, removing usable wood from the waste stream and crafting custom wood  products.

Download the article and scroll down to page 22.



Book Chronicles Urban ‘Tree to Table’ Movement

By Rich Christianson

In his new book, “Tree to Table: Emergence of the Urban Wood Movement,” author Paul Morrison makes it abundantly clear that he did not get into the urban wood business to get rich quick.

If only money mattered, he would never have quit his “comfortable job” as an engineer. But a passion for wood and woodworking ultimately won out after he purchased a portable sawmill ostensibly because he was “too cheap to buy good wood.”

As his log pile grew “out of control” he quit his day job to devote his full time and energy to milling community and other non-commercial forest trees into lumber and fabricating that material into custom furniture. Over the course of the last 15 years, Morrison has built up The Wood Cycle of Oregon, WI, as a successful custom woodworking business and urban wood lumber source serving the greater Madison area.

Morrison draws a parallel between the urban wood and farm to table movements, with an important distinction that tables are literally made of wood. Both of these movements embrace contemporary social attitudes including sustainability and supporting local businesses and economies. Added to this is craftsmanship, which Morrison notes is sorely lacking at most furniture retail showrooms in which a large percentage is manufactured thousands of miles away in China.

Morrison’s book delves into the opportunities and challenges of operating an urban wood products business. He also emphasizes the need to develop a network to be successful and points to Wisconsin Urban Wood, which he is a founding member. He drives home these points with personal anecdotes of projects he has completed .

Tree to Table is an easy and rewarding read. I personally enjoyed the book and heartedly recommend it to anyone interested in learning more about urban wood movement, especially those looking to make a living in this space or those already involved seeking hints at opportunities they might have missed.

Tree to Table is available for $19.95 from Past 9 Publishing. Click here to order a copy or learn more.



First Release: Urban Wood User’s Resource Guide

Illinois Wood Utilization Team

A new national directory dedicated to helping connect tree care professionals, sawyers, woodworkers and other urban wood enthusiasts was recently released by the Urban Forest Full Circle Network. The Urban Wood User’s Resource Guide made its formal debut at the Aug. 26 urban wood utilization seminar held during the International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta.

The guide includes 43 known national, regional, state and municipal sources of information. These sources include urban wood utilization networks, sawmill directories and more. Also included are links to seven publications focused on putting community, landscape and other non-commercial forest trees to their best and highest valued use after they are removed. These trees were felled by invasive pests, storms, development and other end-of-life causes.

The guide and the work of the Urban Forest Full Circle Network was made possible through grant funding provided by the USDA Forest Service Northeastern Area, an equal opportunity provider and employer.

The Urban Forest Full Circle Network includes:

  >>> Illinois Wood Utilization Team;

  >>> Southeast Michigan’s Reclaimed Urban Wood Marketplace;

  >>> Missouri Department of Natural Resources; and

  >>> Wisconsin Urban Wood.

The Urban Wood User’s Resource Guide is a work in progress and is subject to change without notice. This guide will be periodically updated. For listing consideration, contact info@illinoisurbanwood.org.

Access the Urban Wood User’s Resource Guide



Magazine Profiles Baraboo Woodworks’ Urban Wood Model

Baraboo-Woodworks-FeatureBaraboo Woodworks, a member of Wisconsin Urban Wood, was recently featured in Madison Essentials magazine.

The business, focused on converting end-of-life landscape trees into lumber and custom furniture, was launched a year ago by Fred Clark, who previously served three terms in the Wisconsin State Assembly. Clark, a professional arborist, is also executive director of the Forest Stewards Guild.

“The entire concept of Baraboo Woodworks is to connect local wood with local buyers,” Clark told the magazine. “We want to create better options and reduce waste by connecting forests and tree owners with people who care about local products and locally made materials.”

Read the full story.

 



Great News! Urban Wood Shines in WI Hotel Makeover

Oxbow Hotel, urban wood, Eau Claire WoodworksBy Rich Christianson

It’s awesome to see urban wood receiving positive media attention.

Wisconsin Urban Wood and the urban wood movement at large recently received an excellent plug from WEAU TV of Eau Claire, WI.

The TV station ran a profile of current efforts to refurbish the Oxbow Hotel in the city’s downtown with more than 150 furniture items crafted from recycled urban wood. The list of products includes 30 headboards, bar stools, restaurant table and more.

Leading the charge is Tim Brudnicki, owner of Eau Claire Woodworks. Brudnicki, a multi-award winning furniture designer/fabricator, is a member of Wisconsin Urban Wood, a non-profit group that has forged a network of woodworkers, sawyers and tree care specialists to repurpose trees lost to disease, storm damage, etc. into valuable lumber and wood products. The majority of wood being used in the Oxbow Hotel project comes from City of Eau Claire ash trees subject to infestation by the deadly emerald ash borer.

WEAU’s short video report is definitely worth checking out.

 



eco Urban Timber Turns Dead Ash into Cash

Eco-Urban-Timber-Light-BoxEntrepreneurial woodworking artisan Julie McFadden launched eco Urban Timber LLC last year upon realizing the potential of salvaging high-value wood from the city of Eau Claire’s urban forests traumatic battle with the deadly emerald ash borer.

McFadden’s entre into the urban wood products business was recently chronicled by VolumeOne, news from Wisconsin’s Chippewa Valley.

“Ash is such a beautiful wood, and the maples and some of the other woods that are in the urban setting make really interesting furniture,” McFadden told VolumeOne.

eco Urban Timber participates in the Chippewa Valley Urban Wood Project launched in 2014 as part of a collation of Leadership Eau Claire, the Wisconsin DNR and the city of Eau Claire’s efforts to encourage more recycling of dead urban trees, especially those we are anticipating being killed by the emerald ash borer. The project involves many local businesses that have joined together to provide a wide selection of sustainable wood products.

eco Urban Timber sells its products on etsy. They include the Tree of Life Shadow Box, Yoga Cat Tablet Stand, Eau Claire Beer Caddy and Minnesota Wine Rack.

eco Urban Timber is a member of Wisconsin Urban Wood, which is one of three grant partners with the Illinois Wood Utilization Team. The others are in Michigan and Missouri.