Contracting
April 6, 2017 - Following a relatively weak 2016, residential construction activity in Canada is poised to see a modest decrease in 2017 as the number of housing starts is expected to decline to this year, according to The Conference of Canada's latest outlook for the industry. On the other hand, non-residential construction is expected to return to growth in 2017, thanks to government infrastructure spending.
April 6, 2017 -  The deadline for having all Ontario workers who work at heights on construction sites trained in an Ontario Ministry of Labour-approved Working at Heights: Construction program has been extended to October 1, 2017. However, employers must still meet specific requirements in order to qualify for the deadline extension.
I’m not happy and am somewhat crestfallen.
March 15, 2017 - The Alberta government has opened public consultations on its labour laws as part of a review that may mark sweeping reforms. At least one contractor's organization is concerned that changes will not be beneficial to employers in the province.
Mar. 9, 2017 - The value of building permits issued by Canadian municipalities rose 5.4% to $7.6 billion in January, following two consecutive monthly decreases. Six provinces posted increases, led by Alberta and British Columbia. Nationally, construction intentions rose in every component, particularly institutional buildings.
Feb. 9, 2017 - Municipalities issued $7.2 billion worth of building permits in December, down 6.6% from November. Lower construction intentions were recorded for all components, led by commercial buildings and multi-family dwellings. In the residential sector, eight provinces posted declines while Ontario reported a record high.
If you walk through the recently opened Brooklin high school in Whitby, Ont., one of the first things you may notice is its open and light-filled interior. The 173,200-square foot facility includes extensive glazing throughout to provide natural light and visibility for students and staff. What you may not realize is that a significant portion of the glass used to illuminate the school also provides protection against the spread of flames and smoke. In fact, its clear form is hardly distinguishable from its non-fire-rated glass counterparts. This is a credit to recent manufacturing advances.
Websites have been around for about 20 years now, but judging from what I see online a lot of us have never gotten any farther than putting up a very basic page. This is unfortunate, as your website can be a great tool for attracting business.
I imagine there are a number of reasons why use of social media has been lower in this industry than in some others. (I am omitting our architect audience in these comments – the design community has always been on the bleeding edge when it comes to digital everything.)
Jan. 12, 2017 -  Municipalities issued $7.8 billion worth of building permits in November, down 0.1% from the previous month. The decline was largely the result of lower construction intentions in Alberta, following a spike the previous month due to impending changes to the Alberta Building Code.
Glass Canada's Winter Webinar series returns Jan. 24 with "Certified Quality: How contractor certification works in the architectural glass industry to improve our businesses and built environment." In a one-hour interview with Patrick Flannery, Glass Canada editor, Jeff Dabala of AMS and Peter Neudorf Jr. of Ferguson Neudorf will discuss North American Contractor Certification's program for architectural glass and metal contractors and answer attendee's questions. "Certified Quality" is available with free registration courtesy of Vitro.
Dec. 14, 2016 -  Municipalities issued $7.6 billion worth of building permits in October, up 8.7% from September. Higher construction intentions for commercial structures and residential dwellings in Alberta were responsible for much of the gain, as builders filed permits in advance of the changes in the provincial Building Code.
Dec. 14, 2016 - GSM Project is announcing its collaboration with SL Green Realty Corp. on the design of the upcoming observation deck experience at One Vanderbilt, a 1,401-foot skyscraper scheduled to open in New York City in 2020.
Another year has blown by and we’ll soon be looking at 2016 in the rear view mirror.  I’m still looking at the grass from above, so all in all, I don’t have much to complain about. After my rant about our Ontario provincial government in the last issue, the Attorney General finally released the expert review of the Construction Lien Act I’ve been ragging on about for the past few years. 
Saskatchewan premier Brad Wall released a white paper recently calling for a different approach to fighting climate change. In it, he identified “adaptation, innovation and taxation” as the three possible ways to address the problem.

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