Wilkes County’s building materials industry is thriving in part because of the natural resources of this area. Abundant timber, rock and water influenced the way early pioneers survived and earned a living. A local hardware store grew into what is today the nation’s second largest home improvement retailer, Lowe’s Companies. Its growth attracted other building products companies, such as doors, windows and glass, to establish in Wilkes County, creating a local pool of interrelated companies rich in knowledge about building materials and structures. In addition to Lowe’s, other companies in the building materials industry include Window World, Gardner Glass Products, Louisiana-Pacific Corporation, ECMD Incorporated, Jeld-Wen and Church & Church Lumber Company.
LP Roaring River, which directly employs nearly 400 people, produces LP SmartSide, an engineered wood siding and trim product that is a leading brand in the building industry. The mill’s annual capacity is 300 million square feet of siding, trim and soffit a year, enough to clad 102,000 homes annually.
Church and Church Lumber Company, which produces in excess of 20 million board feet of top quality Appalachian Hardwood lumber, White Pine lumber and Yellow Pine lumber annually, supplies product to customers worldwide to be used in furniture, millwork, cabinetry, flooring, decking, log homes, containers and pallets.