Canadian construction projects to more than double within 4 years: PwC

Oil sands to help make Canada one of the fifth largest global construction markets by 2020

TORONTO, May 5 /CNW/ - From 2010 to 2015, Canadian infrastructure will grow at over two and a half times the growth rate seen over the previous five years, a new PwC-sponsored report by Global Construction Perspectives and Oxford Economics found. By 2020, Canada is expected to be the fifth largest construction market behind India and Japan—a jump from its current position in seventh place.

"Over the next decade, we expect infrastructure to be the fastest growing end market in Canada and housing to be the slowest," says Sal Bianco, National Engineering and Construction Leader, PwC. "Responsible for this huge growth are a number of oil sands projects starting in Alberta, the major hydro projects planned in Ontario and Quebec, expanding transportation needs in urban centres and the construction demands the Pan Am Games is placing on the country."

Pan Am Games spur competitive bids

Canada's hosting of the 2015 Pan American Games in Toronto carries a $2.4 billion price tag as new sports venues and other facilities have to be constructed. This includes a $1 billion athlete's village, aquatics centre, indoor gymnasium and running track, and the Canadian Sport Institute complex.

A new Airport Rail Link (ARL)—a 3km rail line between Union Station and Toronto Pearson International Airport—will be completed prior to the Games. Infrastructure Ontario and Metrolinx issued an RFP last month and a preferred bidder among the four already shortlisted will be announced in early 2012.

New transportation projects come at a high cost...

Over 80% of Canadians live in urban areas with an expected average growth rate of about 1% per annum over the next 10 years. "The steady growth of Canadians living in urban cities is placing more pressure for more transportation," says Bianco. "This, in turn, is spurring the increase in transportation infrastructure projects that typically carry high costs."

For instance, there are several transport projects that are either underway or planned in Toronto and Ottawa:

  • The $4.6 billion Light Rail Transit (LRT) in Toronto is the largest transit investment in Canada's history. It includes a 20km tunnel in mid-town Toronto, plus a 12km tunnel to the east.
  • An extension of the Toronto subway to York Region, costing almost $2.7 billion, is in construction. This will link Toronto with York Region via an 8.6km extension and six new stations.
  • The$2.1 billion Ottawa LRT project is its first phase of a larger LRT network the City of Ottawa plans to build. The first phase includes 13 new stations as well as a 3.2km tunnel in downtown Ottawa.

...But oil, gas and hydro projects carry the largest price tags

Many large hydro power projects are either currently in construction or planned, including the country's largest—a $6.5 billion hydro complex in Havre-Saint-Pierre, Quebec, which is expected to be completed by 2020. Other notable projects include:

  • A $5 billion hydro project in James Bay Territory, Quebec, is under construction and is a part of Hydro Quebec's plans to increase hydro output by 15.8TW over the period 2006-14.
  • A $6.2 billion 2,250MW hydro complex in central Labrador is planned, funded by Hydro Quebec. It will supply electricity to Newfoundland and Nova Scotia.

In Alberta, twenty potential new oil sands projects starting over the next five years will increase non-residential construction in Alberta by 21% in 2011. Indeed, spending on capital construction and machinery and equipment in the province is projected to rise by 4.3% this year, to $73.5 billion.

The story is no different over the longer term. Alberta's Capital Plan calls for a $17.6 billion spend on infrastructure to support oil sands development over the next three years, while major industry players like Suncor will spend in excess of $15 billion within the next 5 years and Imperial Oil and CNRL with $8 billion and $4 billion in spend respectively by 2012.

"New builds will continue to attract private investment and Canada has already established a very successful pipeline of privately financed infrastructure investments," says Bianco. Public Private Partnerships Canada (P3), round three funding opens this year and will attract applications for infrastructure projects across the country."

For more information related to forecasts for Canada and other global findings, and to access the complete Global Construction 2020 report, please visit http://www.pwc.com/gx/en/engineering-construction/publications/global-construction-2020.jhtml. The report and supporting materials including graphs and tables are also available from the media contacts.

Follow PwC on Twitter @PwC_Canada_LLP and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pwccanada.

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PwC firms provide industry-focused assurance, tax and advisory services to enhance value for their clients. More than 161,000 people in 154 countries in firms across the PwC network share their thinking, experience and solutions to develop fresh perspectives and practical advice. See www.pwc.com for more information. In Canada, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (www.pwc.com/ca) and its related entities have more than 5,700 partners and staff in offices across the country.

"PwC" is the brand under which member firms of PricewaterhouseCoopers International Limited (PwCIL) operate and provide services. Together, these firms form the PwC network. Each firm in the network is a separate legal entity and does not act as agent of PwCIL or any other member firm. PwCIL does not provide any services to clients. PwCIL is not responsible or liable for the acts or omissions of any of its member firms nor can it control the exercise of their professional judgment or bind them in any way.

Note to Editors: PwC has changed its name from PricewaterhouseCoopers to PwC in the fall of 2010. 'PwC' is written in text with a capital 'P' and capital 'C'. Only when you use the PwC logo is the name represented in lower case.

"PwC" refers to PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, an Ontario limited liability partnership, which is a member firm of PricewaterhouseCoopers International Limited, each member firm of which is a separate legal entity.

SOURCE PwC

For further information:

Contact Kiran Chauhan, PwC
Tel: 416 947 8983
email: kiran.chauhan@ca.pwc.com
OR:
Jessica Draker, PwC
Tel: 613 755 5901 ext. 2158
email: jessica.l.draker@ca.pwc.com

 

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