GSP has a strong connection with its trees, as they are part of the airport’s long and rich history. The airport is actually a certified tree farm and as the trees at GSP grow, they serve as a reminder of the GSP story rooted in the Upstate.
As you may remember from a previous post, GSP is currently in the process of repurposing 26 trees that stood in the short-term parking lot. When trees are cleared from land, they are often cut and sent to a landfill because processing lumber can be time-consuming and costly. In this case, however, GSP is working with local lumber experts to repurpose the lumber back into the WINGSPAN design in a special way.
So far, the trees have been harvested from the lot and sent to Beal Lumber Company in Prosperity, S.C., to be processed into lumber. After the trees are processed, the lumber will be sent to Tidewater Lumber & Moulding, Inc., located in Greer, S.C. Tidewater Lumber & Moulding was founded in 1980 by Ed Voorhees. Today, Tidewater Lumber & Moulding stocks over 25 types of lumber including white oak, cypress, black walnut and even thermo-treated ash. They supply a variety of beautiful wood to customers from Florida to Vermont and are excited to help GSP repurpose the lumber into something truly timeless for the airport to showcase.
We were lucky enough to meet with Louis Voorhees, son of Owner Ed Voorhees, to learn first-hand the process that the WINGSPAN lumber will be put through in the upcoming months. When the lumber arrives at Tidewater Lumber & Moulding, it will be stacked in the sun to start the drying process.
Lumber shrinks as it dries, and Tidewater Lumber & Moulding uses the breeze of the Upstate to help make this process more environmentally friendly. After spending some time drying outside, the lumber is taken into an energy-efficient dehumidification kiln where it is slowly heated and dried flat.
When the lumber has been dried flat and straight, it is ready for milling. How the lumber will be used at GSP will determine how it is milled. The trees harvested from the airport are red oak, and Louis cannot wait to hear how this beautiful material will be used by WINGSPAN architects.
During the milling process, dust and chips from the lumber fall on the workshop floor. Instead of wasting the scraps, the fine folks at Tidewater Lumber & Moulding recycle them into wood shavings used for horse beds, fires and to help heat industrial processes. Even the scraps from the lumber harvested at GSP will be put to use with the help of Tidewater Lumber & Moulding!
All of us here at GSP would like to thank great local businesses like Tidewater Lumber & Moulding for being as dedicated to the Upstate environment and community as we are!
Stay tuned for more WINGSPAN updates and news about how the trees of GSP will be used in upcoming renovations.
– The Terminal