Cleared Trees Rooted in Furniture in Virginia’s First Green House Homes
By Maureen Pearson – Originally Published: JANUARY 11, 2013 The Green House Project Blog
Residents and staff who gather for meals in any of the three Woodland Park homes on the campus of VMRC will be seated at a table made from trees cleared from the site. Several of the white oak trees were cut, dried then hollowed out for preparation for the woodworking phase.
Marv Nisly, vice president of Design & Construction at VMRC, said that there was talk during construction if there was a use for the trees in the homes. “We considered some options and estimated the amount of wood we would need,” he said. VMRC received in-kind services in part from Willow Run Saw Mill and Lantz Woodworking for the furniture-making process.
The result was three sets of several pieces of furniture for each home in the Woodland Park neighborhood: a dining room table which seats 14, a hutch, a game table, side table and matching bookshelves. The white oak pieces were then stained and finished to match the furniture decor in the homes.
VMRC officials say the response has been overwhelming when people learn the story of the furniture. “Many white oak and ash trees graced the property where the original Woodland building was located on VMRC’s campus. When the building was razed to clear the site for Woodland Park, we intentionally kept as many trees that we could,” said Maureen Pearson, VMRC’s director of Communications. “Using the wood from the cleared trees means that the residents of Woodland Park will continue to enjoy those trees but in a different form.”