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State of Emergency – Essential Construction List

The Province Announces the Essential Construction Project List

The Province of Ontario has released its list of essential construction project types that will be able to continue during the state of emergency.

The new rules come into effect on Thursday, Jan. 14 at 12:01 a.m., for all of Ontario. They are anticipated to be in place for at least 28 days.

Under the Enhancing Public Health and Workplace Safety Measures, only essential construction projects are to continue.

The list of essential construction projects include:

To learn more about the state of emergency, please view the Enhancing Public Health and Workplace Safety Measures in the province-wide shutdown document produced by the Province of Ontario:   click here

  • Land surveying and demolition services.
  • Construction projects and services associated with the healthcare sector and long-term care, including new facilities, expansions, renovations and conversion of spaces that could be repurposed for health care space.
  • Construction projects and services required to ensure safe and reliable operations of, or to provide new capacity in, provincial and municipal infrastructure, including transit, transportation, energy, mining and justice sectors beyond the day-to-day maintenance.
  • Construction projects and services that support the operations of, and provide new capacity in schools, colleges, universities, municipal infrastructure and child care centres within the meaning of the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014.
  • Construction projects under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.
  • Construction projects and services that support the operations of Broadband internet and cellular technologies and services. Construction projects and services that support the operations of Broadband internet and cellular technologies and services.
  • Critical industrial construction activities required for, the maintenance and operations of petrochemical plants and refineries, significant industrial petrochemical projects where preliminary work has already commenced, and industrial construction and modifications to existing industrial structures limited solely to work necessary for the production, maintenance, and/or enhancement of Personal Protective Equipment, medical devices (such as ventilators), and other identified products directly related to combatting the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Construction projects that are due to be completed before July 2021 and that would provide additional capacity in the production, processing, manufacturing or distribution of food, beverages or agricultural products.
  • Construction projects that were commenced before January 12, 2021, and that would, provide additional capacity for businesses that provide logistical support, distribution services, warehousing, storage or shipping and delivery services, or provide additional capacity in the operation and delivery of Information Technology (IT) services or telecommunications services.
  • Residential construction projects where, footing permit has been granted for single family, semi-detached and townhomes, the project is a condominium, mixed use or other residential building, or the project involves renovations to residential properties and construction work was started before January 12, 2021.
  • Construction to prepare a site for an institutional, commercial, industrial or residential development, including any necessary excavation, grading, roads or utilities infrastructure.
  • Construction and maintenance activities necessary to temporarily close construction sites that have paused or are not active and to ensure ongoing public safety.
  • Below-grade multi-unit residential construction projects, such as apartments and condominiums. The Ontario government also provided that businesses must follow public health measures and should review the workplace safety guidelines.
  • Construction on any project intended to provide either, affordable housing, or shelter or supports for vulnerable persons, if the project is being funded in whole or in part by, or is being undertaken by, any of the following: the Crown in right of Canada or in right of Ontario, an agency of the Crown in right of Canada or in right of Ontario, a municipality, a service manager as defined in the Housing Services Act, 2011, or, a registered charity and not for profit within the meaning of the Income Tax Act (Canada).

Other important new Health Measures that will affect all businesses include:

The Province also outlined new measures around employees needing to work from home, unless required to be onsite, face masks needing to be used at all times indoors, with limited exceptions, and ensuring that every person stays 2 metres apart.

The construction industry should also be aware that enhanced workplace testing might be required, and that more enforcement officers will be monitoring to ensure compliance.

Ontario One Call:

Ontario One Call is dedicated to providing a reliable and timely locate request process. We remain fully operational to accept locate requests.

We encourage our members to respond in good faith to all locate requests within the obligated timelines. If you suspect an excavation is non-essential and does not fall within the essential construction list, fulfil your obligation to provide a locate and contact your local Public Health Unit.

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