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Today there are about 4 billion urban trees in the U.S., with another 70 billion growing in metropolitan areas. As urban land in the U.S. expands, so do the urban forests. Urban land in the lower 48 states increased from 2.5% of total land area in 1990 to 3.1% in 2000, an area about the size of Vermont and New Hampshire combined. Researchers from the U.S. Forest Service project that urban land in the coterminous U.S. will nearly triple in size to over 8% by 2050, an area larger than the state of Montana (Nowak and Walton 2005).

This report focuses on an emerging urban wood-based industrial (business) cluster in the Minneapolis-St. Paul (Twin Cities) metropolitan area. Examples of Twin Cities’ cluster-based wood utilization activities and corresponding cluster-building techniques are highlighted. Recommendations for advancing wood utilization activities on a community-wide basis are offered.

USDA Forest Service Report here.

Recent projects