Request to rescind the provincial regulation overriding Toronto’s Construction Noise By-law

12th floor, West Tower, City Hall
100 Queen Street West
Toronto, ON M5H 2N2

Attention: Marilyn Toft

RE: MM22.39 – Request for the Province to Rescind the Provincial Regulation Overriding Toronto’s Construction Noise By-Law 

Dear Mayor Tory and Councillors,

This correspondence is provided to indicate our strong support for Councillor Wong-Tam’s Motion that “City Council request the Province of Ontario to immediately rescind Ontario Regulation 130/20”.  Limitation 2 to Ontario Regulation 130/20, enacted April 7, 2020, does not allow the City to regulate or prohibit noise in connection with construction. The Regulation overrides the City of Toronto’s municipal noise by-law through to October 7, 2021, to the detriment of residents.

FoNTRA wrote to the Premier on April 19 to request that this measure (as well as making residential construction an essential service, opening a significant risk of COVID-19 infection to workers) be reversed.  Excessive noise is a health hazard that impacts the physical and mental health, and quality of life of residents. Toronto’s Noise By-law permits construction to operate Monday to Friday 7 am to 7 pm, Saturdays 9 am to 7 pm, and not at all on Sundays and statutory holidays. Allowing construction equipment to operate from 6 am to 10 pm, 7 days a week, including holidays, at a time when many more people will be exposed as they are now at home is both inappropriate as a policy measure, and harmful to Toronto residents.

We have received numerous complaints from individuals and resident associations. Opening of noise permissions must stop as soon as possible and not be open until 2021. Given the impacts on public health of excessive noise, the government’s decisions to reduce or open restrictions must be made on the basis of public health advice, and not on sectoral influence.  We question whether this measure passes this test. We support the City urging the Province to reverse this measure, and eliminate the override on the City of Toronto’s Noise By-Law.

Yours truly,

Geoff Kettel
Co-Chair, FoNTRA

Cathie Macdonald
Co-Chair, FoNTRA

cc: Toronto Office of Rebuild and Recovery
Tracey Cook, Executive Director, Municipal Licensing and Standards