The APA-Engineered Wood Association predicts increasing demand for North American engineered wood products by 30 to 45 percent through 2018.

The association forecasts demand in structural panels will grow by 31 percent, and demand for other engineered wood products will grow by 40 to 45 percent.

The increase is driven by a 16 percent increase in U.S. housing starts and the belief that demand for structural panels in residential construction in North America will rise 11 percent in the remainder of 2014. Growth in the other end-uses is projected to be 2.5 percent, and North American production of oriented strand board and plywood is expected to hit 32.2 billion square feet in 2014.

The APA-Engineered Wood Association also says glued laminated timber production rose 11 percent in 2013, and is projected to grow 6 percent in 2014 to 266 million board feet. L-joist production is expected to increase to 682 million linear feet in 2014, and should reach 913 million linear feet by 2018 as long as U.S. housing starts steadily increase. 

Laminated veneer lumber demand will also benefit from the growing housing starts, and is forecast to reach 62.7 million cubic feet in 2014. By 2018, that number is projected to grow by 46 percent to 83 million cubic feet.