April 13, 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 12, 2017 - Canadian municipalities issued $7.5 billion worth of building permits in February, down 2.5% from January. Ontario and Alberta led the five provinces that reported declines in February. The national decrease was mainly the result of lower construction intentions for single-family dwellings and institutional structures.
As spring arrives, the National Safety Council's Window Safety Task Force encourages everyone to recognize the importance of practicing window safety during Window Safety Week, being observed in 2017 from April 2-8. However, open windows any time of year can be dangerous for young children who are not properly supervised. While the number of falls from windows is generally very small compared with other recorded child injuries, a window incident can result in serious injury or possibly even death.
Mar. 16, 2017 - The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) has launched the Gender, Work and Health web portal to help bridge the gap between gender, sex, and health, and their impact on the workplace.
They call B.C. the Wild West. Where else would your competitor roll up on your job site and offer your crew a few bucks more an hour and a 40-pounder of Crown Royal to sweeten the deal? It’s no secret, there has been a skilled labour shortage for a long time. The competition is fierce to find good people. It’s a crisis across the continent. With the skill gap that we have today, you need to hire ahead of the game, not with the game. Otherwise, you are going to be poaching or others are going to be poaching from you.
Back in my university days, I took up a filthy habit. Those of you who know me will be asking “Which one?” so I better be more specific. I got interested in politics and ended up minoring in political science. Twenty-five years later, the Americans elected Donald Trump president, pretty much proving that everything I thought I’d learned was wrong. Oh, well. There hadn’t been much application for that knowledge anyway.
Feb. 16, 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.
Feb. 1, 2017 - After two years of decline, construction activity in Canada is expected to edge slightly higher this year. Growth overall will be slower and uneven across the provinces, with the anticipated start and finish of major projects and downturn in residential building. One of the biggest challenges across the entire industry this decade is offsetting the rapid retirement of an estimated 21 percent of the country's construction workforce, according to the latest labour market forecast released today by BuildForce Canada.
Jan. 19, 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.
I read with interest the article on the skilled trades workers protesting Bill 70 of the provincial government. The fight against this government initiative appears to be relying on hyperbole and scare tactics. Yet the initiative was required in part due to actions brought on by many skilled tradespersons. When the government set up the College of Trades, it turned over to the industry much of the power that the government had previously exercised itself in its attempt to do what was best for all Ontarians. Unfortunately, experience has proven that when one turns power over to a specific group, that group may choose to exercise that power to further its own best interests rather than the best interests of society as a whole.
Dec. 8, 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.
Nov. 10, 2016 - The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) has released an app that provides instant access, on mobile devices, to useful workplace health and safety advice and information.
Nov. 10, 2016 - The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, visited Toronto Community Housing Wednesday to address key stakeholders in the field of housing, homelessness, childcare. During his visit, he highlighted important measures outlined in the Fall Economic Statement and related to social infrastructure. These measures aim to build stronger, more inclusive communities and improve the quality of life of the middle class and those working hard to join it.
Failing to plan is planning to fail. With budget season upon us, this is a great time to look beyond the day to day and capture your vision for 2017 and beyond. If you don’t already have a marketing plan, it need not be complicated. Depending on the resources available, an elaborate marketing plan is often not sustainable or achievable. Instead, a working marketing plan can be as simple as a spreadsheet with three tabs for Assumptions, Calendar and Budget. As the years go on, the tabs may expand but with trial and error, the information will only become more refined.
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