Construction Forecasts

News & Analysis

Top 10 and trend graph-July 2011

08/16/2011 by Alex Carrick, RCD Canadian Chief Economist

The accompanying table records the 10 largest construction project starts in Canada in July 2011. Also included is the latest trend graph on starts. This looks at 12-month moving totals of the two major non-residential building categories in Canada − total ICI starts and engineering work. ICI stands for industrial, commercial and institutional.

There are several reasons for highlighting upcoming large projects. Such jobs have often received a fair amount of media coverage. Therefore, people in the industry are on the lookout for when job-site work actually gets underway. And, as showcase projects, they highlight geographically where major construction projects are proceeding.

Also, total construction activity is comprised of many small and medium-sized projects and a limited number of large developments. But the largest projects, simply by their nature, can dramatically affect total dollar and square footage volumes. In other words, the timing and size of these projects have an exaggerated influence on market forecasts.

Top 10 projects of the month - July 2011
(East to
Sq. Ft.
Nova Scotia:
Halifax Institutional Halifax Central Library  97 $55
(3 storeys; 1 structure), Spring Garden Road
Halifax Regional Municipality
Québec Institutional Musée national des beaux Arts 111 $90
(3 storeys; 2 structures), parc des Champs-de-Bataille, will be LEED Certified
Musée nat beaux arts Québec
Montréal Residential Courtyard Marriott Montreal Centre-ville (apartment and hotel building) 600 $60
(40 storeys; 420 units; 1 structure), angle des rues René-Lévesque et De Bleury 
Groupe Canvar inc
Sudbury District Engineering Clarabell Mill CORe Project 38 $200
(1 storey; 4 structures), Godfrey Drive, Copper Cliff
Vaughan Institutional Vaughan Corporate Centre Subway 16 $197
(2 storeys; 1 structure), Highway 7
Toronto Transit Commission
East Gwillimbury Engineering York Durham Sanitary Sewer Extension * $139
Regional Municipality of York
Toronto Engineering Weston Road Bridge * $65
Welland Engineering Highway 406 * $61
Ministry of Transportation of Ontario
Calgary Engineering Shepard Energy Centre (natural gas-fired power plant) * $1,700
ENMAX Energy Corporation
British Columbia:
Vancouver Residential Playhouse Site Redevelopment 394 $60
(17 storeys; 810 units; 4 structures), 100, 140 West 1 Avenue,
will be LEED Certified
Wall Financial Corporation
TOTALS:     1,256 $2,627

*A square footage measure does not apply for alteration and engineering work.
Trend lines of construction starts in Canada – July 2011
Moving totals of the latest 12 months* (CanaData Figures)
Trend lines of construction starts in Canada – July 2011
*For example, the July 2011 figure is the sum of the monthly figures for August 2010 through July 2011.
†ICI is the sum of industrial, commercial and institutional.
The prominent jumps in the engineering curve reflect such mega project starts as Horizon Oil Sands work in Alberta (March 2005), the Canada Line LRT project between Richmond and Vancouver in B.C. (January 2006), the Eastmain 1-A hydroelectric power project in northern Québec (June 2007), the Port Mann bridge in B.C. (November 2009), the Kearl Oil Sands Project in Alberta (April 2010), and the Firebag 4 SAGD Oil Sands project in Alberta (June 2011). In May 2010, the ICI curve shot upward due to the McGill University medical centre project in Montreal.
Data source and chart: Reed Construction Data – CanaData.


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