October 23, 2020
Ontario Takes Steps to Accelerate the Building of Key Infrastructure Projects

Ontario Rebuilding and Recovery Act, 2020 Would Lay the Foundation for Job Creation and a Strong Economic Recovery

The Ontario government is introducing a package of legislative and policy measures that would, if passed, accelerate the building of key infrastructure projects to create jobs and lay the foundation for a strong economic recovery. The Ontario Rebuilding and Recovery Act, 2020 would support the construction of better-connected highways and public transit networks, transit-oriented communities, and affordable housing.

Accelerated delivery of these projects would also boost Ontario's economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, getting more people back to work more quickly. In order to support this ambitious infrastructure plan, Ontario requires a strong skilled trades and professional workforce.

Click here to read the full Press Release.

CCA calls for freer interprovincial trade

The Canadian Construction Association (CCA) is urging all levels of government to support and enhance Canada’s economic recovery by maintaining a free-flowing system of trade and labour mobility between provinces.

CCA has long advocated that reciprocity and the free movement of construction materials, services and personnel within Canada are not only important underpinning principles of our federation but are essential elements of our national economy, a fact highlighted as COVID-19 continues to cause disruptions not only in critical supplies but in workforces as well.

Click here to read the full Press Release.

Coronavirus Contractor Survey 4: Stability & Anxiety

The Coronavirus Contractor Survey: Stability & Anxiety is released as the fourth survey in a series of independent studies conducted by the Ontario Construction Secretariat (OCS). Between September 8 and September 18, 2020, the OCS led a Contractor’s Survey of 300 ICI contractors from across Ontario.

The survey provides insights on how the construction industry is showing signs of stability but anxiety of a second wave of COVID-19 persists. Contractors are also expressing some concerns about the outlook of 2021.

Click here to download the PDF report.

Infrastructure bank to invest $10B in priority areas for pandemic recovery

The Liberal government is promising to finally spend $10 billion that has sat in the accounts of its infrastructure financing agency for years, hoping to create thousands of post-pandemic jobs.

The reshaped spending will front the costs for things like energy retrofits of buildings, offer low-cost financing for the purchase of zero-emission buses, or de-risk agriculture projects with uncertain returns due to commodity price fluctuations.

Click here to read the full News release.

Ontario Launches Recovery Program for Northern Businesses Impacted by COVID-19

Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines and Minister of Indigenous Affairs announced the creation of a new short-term Northern Ontario Recovery Program (NORP) to help businesses adapt to new COVID-19 public health guidelines and protect employees and customers.

Companies can apply to NORP for assistance with projects that help them adjust to the impacts of COVID-19, such as, but not limited to:

  • Building renovations and new constructions
  • Customer and employee safety installations
  • Equipment purchases, including personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Marketing for new business initiatives
  • Restructuring of business operations

Applications will be open from October 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020, with the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) administering the new program.

Click here to read the full News release.

Ontario committee’s COVID infrastructure report a ‘head scratcher,’ says Cautillo

The Fifth Interim Report on the Economic and Fiscal Update Act, 2020, sets out the all-party committee’s findings and recommendations following a review of how the COVID-19 crisis has affected Ontario’s infrastructure sector.

Presentations were made by more than 40 stakeholders including Andy Manahan, executive director of the Residential and Civil Construction Alliance of Ontario, Cautillo, and Sandro Perruzza, chair of the board of the Construction and Design Alliance of Ontario (CDAO) and CEO of the Ontario Society of Professional Engineers.

Click here to read the complete news release.

Toronto adds to tally despite COVID-19, stays well atop rival cities in latest crane count

Canada’s most populous city added three cranes since the previous count earlier this year, in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic that has forced contractors to adjust to heightened safety standards and a less optimistic building market. With 124 cranes jutting upward across the city, Toronto accounts for nearly 30 per cent of the North American total.

Seattle (43), Los Angeles (41), Washington D.C. (38) and Calgary (34) are Toronto’s closest competition in the third-quarter index.

Click here to read the full News release.

‘Long road to recovery remains’: No change to construction employment in September

Construction escaped layoffs in the early weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic, but was hard-hit by job losses in April, during which it shed more than 300,000 jobs, or about 20 per cent of its workforce.

Staffing levels during September reached 1.369 million for construction, down 109,000 workers, or 7.4 per cent, compared to the same period last year. Statistics Canada pointed to British Columbia and Ontario as the hardest hit. The construction workforce was down 16.3 and 9.5 per cent, respectively, in each province, compared to their pre-pandemic highs.

Two consecutive months of little change in the construction labour market means a “long road to recovery remains” for the industry, Statistics Canada said October 9th.

Click here to read the full News release.

What the construction industry needs to consider to address the ongoing labour shortage

The decreased labour force in the construction industry presents an opportunity for organizations to not just do more with less but to rethink how they use technology to enhance their results.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, many provinces were experiencing labour shortages, and an increasing number of workers retiring is expected to exacerbate the problem.

In advance of Canada’s 2020 federal budget, the Canadian Construction Association (CCA), recommended the federal government “become a partner in providing the necessary framework and investment to enhance industry-wide collaboration for innovation in the construction industry.”

Click here to read the full News release.

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TCA Resources on COVID-19

To access TCA dedicated Covid-19 Updates, click here.