British Columbia’s private construction industry should brace for a complete shutdown, according to industry leaders, following the lead of Quebec which closed all non-essential construction sites at midnight March 24.
“It is the inevitable next step,” said Jon Stovell, president and CEO of Reliance Properties and past chair of the Urban Development Institute.
Quebec announced the extended shutdown of the majority of construction sites as it ramped up efforts to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus. Quebec’s construction unions had called for a work stoppage, saying many sites lack proper hygiene control and require working close to others.
B.C. is second only to Quebec in the number of residents infected by COVID-19.
On March 22, six days after B.C. banned large gatherings, its COVID-19 Joint Information Centre released guidelines that allow for construction to continue, provided no more than 50 workers are working in any one space at a time.
Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, has issued a set of guidelines regarding hygiene on construction sites.
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