Construction in Canada During COVID-19: Ontario and British Columbia




Although extensive construction work is continuing in Canada, COVID-19 related restrictions have impacted how they take place.

Overview of Ontario

Ontario regulations consider projects associated with the health care sector as essential. Expansions, renovations, or the conversion of a space to one that can be used for health care services may continue. Modifications to industrial structures to accommodate or enhance PPE and other products used to combat COVID-19 are included in the list of essential construction activities. Maintenance for petrochemical plants and refineries, and significant industrial petrochemical projects where preliminary work has already commenced are outlined in the regulation. Preparation of a site for an institutional, commercial, industrial or residential development, including any necessary excavation, grading, roads or utilities infrastructure are also included in the legislation. Residential projects that began prior to April 4th may continue as well.

Overview of British Columbia

British Columbia has deemed construction work and firms, skilled trades/professionals, and construction machinery/equipment rental essential. Other workers included are those who conduct site inspections or manage claims for workplace accidents, and staffing services (including temporary labour). Environmental management/monitoring and spill clean-up and response services, Plumbers, electricians, elevator maintenance providers, property management services, building systems maintenance and repair technicians, engineers, fire safety and sprinkler systems are also listed.

BC businesses that are not considered essential may remain open as long as they comply with the PHO (Provincial Health Officer) recommendations. If the PHO determines they have not, an Order closing the business may be issued.

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