Special to Ontario Construction News
Sights are on the Municipality of Clarington as a place to call home. In the last few years, dollars have been spent on infrastructure projects totally over $14 billion and Clarington’s total building permit value continues to increase year after year. With a population fast approaching 100,000 and expected to increase by more than 45 per cent by the year 2031, people and businesses are making a commitment to secure their future in Clarington.
Construction is booming
According to the Municipality of Clarington’s 2018 Growth Trends Review report, Clarington’s total building permit value increased by 11.3 per cent from $379.6 million in 2017 to $422.6 million in 2018. Residential building permit values rose by 4.0 per cent in 2018, rising from $330.3 million to $343.4 million. The value of non-residential building permits in 2018 increased by 60.3 per cent from $49.4 million to $79.1 million.
Clarington is one of the fastest-growing municipalities within Durham Region. Over the past 15 years, Clarington’s share of building permit values in Durham has more than doubled, rising from 10 per cent to over 20 per cent. In 2018, the total value of building permits in the Region of Durham was $2.06 billion, an increase of $98 million from the previous year. The Municipality of Clarington contributed approximately a quarter of that total value.
1 million square feet of investment
Over 1 Million square feet of industrial space for various users will be constructed in the next 18 months. Construction of the Toyota Canada Inc. 350,000 square foot eastern Canada Parts Distribution Centre is well underway in east Bowmanville. A $40 million investment and bringing more than 100 jobs, they are projected to be in operation by April 2020.
The spring of this year, East Penn Canada announced Clarington will be the location for their new distribution centre headquarters. They have plans to construct a 200,000 sq. ft. facility south of Highway 401. The focus of East Penn Canada is battery distribution and recovery for industries in motive power, telecommunications, UPS backup and renewable energy applications as well as the automotive industry. Currently, East Penn Canada has over 400 employees nationally, of which 200 of those employees will be working out of the new Clarington location. The site plan process is currently underway for this project.
Clarington is becoming the foundation for cannabis innovation. Currently, there are three Health Canada Licensed Producers in the community and soon to be four. Six additional cannabis licensed holders are in various stages of development. It is anticipated this industry will represent over 1,000 skilled jobs including those involved in cultivation, extraction, research & development and product development. This summer, Cannapiece Corp has started the development process to construct a 500,000 sq. ft., four-floor micro-cultivation medicinal cannabis facility. 600 jobs are anticipated to be created.
Many other developments are or will be underway in the near future. The three mentioned above represent a high building permit value.
Year 2024: A vision realized
In the next five years, the Clarington community will reflect the result of the investment of billions of dollars, represented by housing growth, completed infrastructure projects, newly constructed facilities and the creation of over 4,000 jobs.
Highway 407 East Extension to the 35/115 Highway and 418 freeway linking Highway 401 to 407 will be complete. Darlington Nuclear Refurbishment Project will be near completion (2026) and the GO Transit Lakeshore East line extension to Bowmanville will be closer to being achieved, creating further economic growth.
In June, Ontario Power Generation (OPG) announced its plan to build a new corporate campus in Clarington which will be consolidating its operations, fostering collaboration and innovation. Plans are to build this campus by 2024. The facility will accommodate staff from 15 existing locations across the Greater Toronto Area and Niagara Region, bringing over 2,000 jobs to the Clarington community. OPG has created a positive economic imprint in Durham Region, supplying 34 per cent of clean, safe, reliable energy to Ontario for 30 years.
“We cherish the relationship we have built over the many years with OPG and their vendors serving the plant, we are excited to work even harder to encourage economic spin-off and that these benefits are realized in Clarington”, stated Sheila Hall, executive director of the Clarington Board of Trade and Office of Economic Development. The new campus will be built on an existing OPG site just north of the Darlington Energy Complex. It will house OPG’s corporate headquarters, as well as renewable generation and nuclear staff.
Employment land coming on-line
On Jan. 30, 2019, Region of Durham Council approved the 2019 Servicing and Financing Studies for both Sewer and Water as well transportation infrastructure. This budget has some significant investments within Clarington which will help with continued growth and improvements for existing residents, businesses and visitors to the community as well as opportunity for attracting new investment.
The 2019 Water Supply and Sanitary Sewerage Program include projects such as Phase 3 of the Courtice Trunk construction on Baseline Road from Courtice Road to Trulls Road, and Trulls Road. from Baseline to Bloor Street. – a $25.9 million investment. This gives businesses in this area the option to connect to sewer and water services, allowing further growth and new development.
Construction is forecasted to start in 2022 for the extension of the Baseline Road Trunk System sewer from Simpson Avenue to Bennett Road in Bowmanville. A total investment of $7 million – creating the opportunity to maximize development of over 200 acres of employment lands in the Clarington Technology Park.
Clarington’s healthy mix of economy, quality of life and opportunity lays the foundation for a community in which businesses chose to operate and where employees chose to live.
Story contributed by Bonnie Wrightman, manager of business development, Clarington Board of Trade and Office of Economic Development.