FRONTLINE - The Ontario Construction Consortium Newsletter


We are pleased to present this issue of FRONTLINE the Ontario Construction Consortium Newsletter – for May – June 2020.
This newsletter will be published every two months – to update you on OCC initiatives and events. We hope you find it informative.

If you have any questions about OCC. Email –

The Ontario Construction Consortium – a new voice for quality work, a robust training sector and safe workplaces.

Formed in 2018, the Ontario Construction Consortium is an organization dedicated to strengthening the construction industry through Advocacy, Education, Networking and Workforce Development.
This update on OCC activities comes at a critical time for Ontario as COVID 19 infections have risen again to record levels, and parts of the province have been moved back into modified Stage 2, with restrictions on a number of businesses and activities. The construction industry continues to be busy, however. The Carpenters Union reports that there is only a 4% downturn in activity for their members over this time last year. Our industry has maintained an admirable record on health and safety on jobsites ever since building activity resumed in the spring.
We encourage all our partners on the province’s construction sites to keep up this excellent record by taking all necessary measures to keep the pandemic at bay – including distancing, wearing masks, handwashing and ready access to personal protective equipment.

OCC / Empire Club webcast – Post Covid: The Future of Downtown

OCC organized and sponsored a webcast in partnership with the Empire Club of Canada – Post Covid: The Future of Downtown. The webcast went live on Tuesday, October 20th at 12 noon.
The COVID 19 pandemic dealt a staggering blow to our downtowns. In the spring, offices and businesses were closed entirely. Organizations continued to operate with employees working remotely. Some businesses failed entirely. Even as offices have reopened, most people continue to work from home. Walking through an office building now can be an eerie experience. The lack of foot traffic in our urban cores is also devastating for restaurants, coffee shops and retailers.
In presenting this webcast, we were looking for answers. After COVID, will downtowns bounce back? To what extent? And how long will it take? How much commercial space will be vacant? What are other possible uses for this space?
Our cities will recover. But how? And when?
We were able to pull together a first-class panel of experts for this event from business, labour and academia.

The OCC planned and sponsored a webcast Oct. 20 that included an expert
panel offering their thoughts on the future of Toronto’s downtown core
after COVID-19. Clockwise, from left: Mary Rowe, moderator; Mark Garner,
COO of the Downtown Yonge BIA; William Logar, Executive Vice President
of Kingsett Capital; Phil Gillies, OCC; Kelly Jackson,
Empire Club First Vice President; and Mike Yorke, Carpenters District
Council President.

Panelists were:
The webcast was joined by over 500 viewers. If you didn’t catch it live, you can view a recording. Here is the link: Watch webcast

Ontario Helping Apprentices Cover Living Expenses

The Ontario government is investing $75 million in new money to help apprentices cover their living expenses during their in-class training. This funding will be available over the next two years.
The announcement was made by Labour and Training Minister Monte McNaughton on October 7th. Minister McNaughton was joined at the announcement by Patrick Dillon from the Provincial Building and Construction Trades Council of Ontario and other industry leaders.
The announcement includes:
and some other funding streams.
If you would like more information on this, here is the full text of the government announcement: Read more

Ontario Takes Steps to Accelerate Construction of Key Infrastructure Projects

The Ford Government has introduced a package of legislative and policy measures that will accelerate the building of key infrastructure projects already in the pipeline.
Focus will be on transportation projects, transit-oriented communities and affordable housing.
This legislation, the Ontario Rebuilding and Recovery Act, is aimed at reducing barriers in the planning, design and construction of major infrastructure projects. Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney said “the current approach to building major infrastructure projects is plagued with red tape and costly delays. Through these proposed measures, we’re getting shovels in the ground more quickly… improve the lives of Ontarians right across the province”.
Here is the government’s announcement in full: Read more

Buildings Week – November 30 – December 4, 2020

Ontario Construction Consortium and many of our partners always enjoy attending the Buildings Show – put on by Construct Canada, PM Expo, HomeBuilder & Renovator Expo and other industry leaders.
This year the many facets of the Building Show are being pulled together into a national digital platform: Buildings Week. It will run from November 30th through December 4th. The show normally attracts more than 70,000 construction, design and real estate professionals. It is hoped this year’s virtual show will be just as far-reaching and successful.
To register for Buildings Week, here is the link: Register here

We welcome your submissions!

If you would like to share the news about an innovative project or activity you are excited about, please let us know at OCC. We would like to put the word out about good things in construction through Front Line.
We love to hear from you!

FRONTLINE is a publication of the the Ontario Construction Consortium – a think tank / lobby supported by unionized contractors and stakeholders from the province’s construction sector. We welcome your feedback. You can unsubscribe at any time by emailing with the word Unsubscribe in the subject line.