Industry Update September 14, 2020

OHBA Updates 

OHBA Regional Call

OHBA has scheduled their next Regional Conference Call to provide a general COVID-19 and government relations update on Tuesday September 15 @ 9:00. The short half hour meeting will be open to any interested members from all local HBAs.

WE HBA encourages our members to take part!

Follow this link to register for the meeting:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.


Province Updates Growth Plan (Amendment 1) and Land Needs Assessment

On August 28th, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing updated the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe and the Land Needs Assessment methodology. Proposed Amendment 1 and Environmental Registry postings were responded to through an OHBA and BILD joint submission on July 30th. WE HBA also provided a submission to the Ministry on these postings. The submissions were generally supportive of the Ministry proposals, and OHBA provided a number of specific recommendations to enhance both Amendment 1 to the Growth Plan and the Land Needs Assessment. The Growth Plan conformity deadline is July 1, 2022.


Key resources and links:

  • A Place to Grow 2020:

  • A Place to Grow ERO Decision Notice:

  • Land Needs Assessment 2020:

  • Land Needs Assessment ERO Decision Notice:


  • Growth Plan Schedule 3 is updated with 2051 forecasts
  • Growth Plan language is adjusted (as recommended by OHBA) to confirm 2051 as the conformity requirement
  • Growth Plan language is adjusted (as recommended by OHBA) to clearly state 2051 forecast as “minimum” numbers
  • Growth Plan Schedule 7 (Simcoe) has been removed (Simcoe numbers are in Schedule 3)
  • Government has adopted “mid-point” reference scenario for Growth Plan forecasts
  • Hemson has released additional technical background work on the 2051 growth forecasts to break out population by unit type (recommended by OHBA)
  • July 1, 2022 is confirmed (as supported by OHBA) as the conformity date with no additional transition, although municipalities will be able to phase in conformity through multiple Official Plan Amendments should they choose to do so until July 1, 2022
  • Government is not proceeding with initially proposed amendments regarding mineral resources
  • The Land Needs Assessment (as was recommended by OHBA) has been streamlined from a 100+ page document to approximately 25 pages and is now a “market-based” methodology, which differs from the previous approach and will support more appropriate housing supply in the planning process

OHBA notes that 11 local home builders’ associations are impacted by the Growth Plan (BILD, Niagara, West End, Brantford, Haldimand-Norfolk, Waterloo Region, Guelph & District, Greater Dufferin, Simcoe County, Peterborough & the Kawartha and Durham Region).


City of Hamilton Update

Hamilton Fire Flow Policy Pilot

The City of Hamilton was undergoing an 8-month pilot period regarding changing the use of the FUS (Fire Underwriter’s Survey) fire flow policy to the fire flow policy of the OBC (Ontario Building Code). WE HBA provided a number of written submissions and delegations on this item over the past year, in support of the fire flow policies for low-rise communities but maintaining that further details needed to be worked out for mid, high-rise, industrial and infill buildings. In November 2019, the Watermain Fire Flow Requirement Design Guidelines Policy went to General Issues Committee and was approved for a pilot period that included consultation with WE HBA in the final months.

During the pilot period, residential forms were allowed to undergo recalculations using OBC when previously calculated under FUS. Applications reviewed under the Old Fire Flow Policy during the pilot period had previously submitted Fire Underwriter’s Survey (FUS) method required fire flow (RFF) calculations prior to the adoption of the new policy by Council on November 27, 2019. All of these applications were therefore a second (or higher) submission.

The attached PowerPoint provides a comparison on calculations made under the old fire flow policy versus the new fire flow policy, and also assesses those that have been resubmitted under the new policy through the transition. It provides further details on timing for approvals, review timelines, and general observations of experiences with the new policy to date.


Skills for Change Program

Horticulture Technician Pre-Apprenticeship Program

The Government of Ontario and Mohawk College are partnering with Skills for Change to provide the Horticulture Technician Pre-Apprenticeship Training Program, that prepares people who have a keen interest in the skilled trades for employment in the landscape sector. Typical jobs in this industry include landscape construction, grounds and golf course maintenance, parks operations and gardens care. The 32 week program provides: academic upgrading, Level 1 Apprenticeship training for the trade of Horticultural Technician in Ontario, Health and Safety training including WHMIS, worker safety and First Aid, introduction to Brick and Masonry Trade, employment preparation training, paid work placement in the landscape industry and individual counselling and support services.

For more information and how to apply, follow this link now! Take a look at the program flyer as well, linked above!


Webinar Update

CHBA Webinar

Homebuying Trends — What Canadians Want

Join CHBA CEO Kevin Lee and Tim Bailey, Chief Strategy Officer of Avid Ratings, as they unveil the results from the 2020 Home Buyer Preference Survey, which surveyed 27,674 new home buyers across 8 provinces. Learn about this year’s emerging home buying trends as your hosts take an in-depth look at this year’s data, and demonstrate how you can benefits from the survey’s incredible and easy-to-use online analysis tool to mine the data most relevant to your market, product type and target buyer.

This year the full survey results, including access to the Online Avid Reports Portal where you can filter the data based on a variety of geographic and demographic criteria, will be available for free for CHBA members – a $495 value.

Wednesday September 16 | 11 AM – 12 PM

Register here now!


WE HBA Job Postings

Looking for a career in the industry or looking to fill one? Check out the WE HBA Careers Page on our website for the latest job updates in the industry.

Current opportunities can be found here!