Building Tree founder and owner, Paula, arrived in Nelson in Jan 07, looking for work on green building projects. She found many local, independent green builders, contractors and designers but most were one-man/woman operations, not willing or able to expand.
The growth of the green building industry was limited by poor access to green materials and limited connections to each other and to the green building market – we all needed more exposure and revenue to thrive, not just survive. There was an obvious need to start collaborating and sharing knowledge and connections but no one had the time, resources or location to set up the hub.
Paula decided she would tackle the problem and, after a year of planning and working, the Building Tree opened in March 2008. It featured a showroom and sales center, a shared office and meeting space for like minded businesses and organizations.
The shared office has been occupied by a variety of businesses with an eco-focus. Landscapers, horticulturalists, designers, non-profits, alternative energy providers and eco-tour operators. Both these people and part time help and full time staff have kept the business constantly shifting and growing.