Articles & Publications

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The Operating Principle of “Good Faith” in Construction Contracts – Part II

SCC Judgment: C.M. Callow Inc. v Zollinger – The Exercise of Termination Clauses

As published in Northern Construction Connection January 2021 Newsletter – Part II of The Operating Principle of “Good Faith” in Construction Contracts

The Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) rendered its judgment in the case of C.M. Callow Inc. v Zollinger on December 18, 2020.

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Architects, Engineers, and Builders — Oh My! The Architectural Institute of British Columbia v. Langford (City), 2020 BCSC 801

As published in Northern Construction Connection October 2020 Newsletter.

In 2016, the City of Langford’s Chief Building Inspector issued a building permit for the construction of a residential / commercial strata complex. An architect was not involved in the project – the design and drawings were completed by a designer.

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Anatomy of a Builders Lien

As published in Northern Construction Connection September 2020 Newsletter.

What is a Builders Lien? A lien is a legal right against assets that are used as collateral to satisfy a debt. The Builders Lien Act (the “Act”) of British Columbia provides a lien for payment owed to a party that performs work and/or supplies materials in relation to an improvement.

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The “As-and-When” Contracts – How to Contract when the Scope and Timing of Work is Uncertain

As published in Northern Construction Connection July 2020 Newsletter

The variety of contract models that may be used for construction work is reflective of the broad range of projects undertaken by the industry and the flexibility needed to address pricing options.  Where owners may require ongoing, but sporadic, maintenance services, or multiple routine pieces of work, or relatively small-value projects, the frequency, timing, value and scope of the work of individual assignments may not be fully known in advance.  An option for parties wanting to engage in such projects may be to enter into “as-and-when” contracts…

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Charlesfort Developments Ltd. v. Ottawa (City of), 2019 ONSC 4460

As published in Northern Construction Connection June 2020 Newsletter

In this July 24, 2019 Ontario Superior Court of Justice decision, Justice Sally Gomery addressed the question of whether the City of Ottawa was legally required, as part of a site-specific rezoning process, to advise the developer, Charlesfort Developments Ltd. (Charlesfort), of the risks of developing next to critical municipal infrastructure that was located in an adjacent municipal easement.  In this case, the property was being rezoned to permit the development of a 15-storey condominium tower with a 2-storey underground parking garage. The property adjacent to the development site contained an easement in favour of the City of Ottawa, within which a high-pressure water main was located……

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Prime Contractor Obligations

As published in Northern Construction Connection March 2020 Newsletter

The awareness around prime contractor responsibilities appears to be much greater now than it did even a decade ago, certainly based on our dealings with clients and construction industry members.  It is not uncommon, for example, to now see prominent signs near construction sites identifying the party assuming the prime contractor’s role.  For those NRCA members that are new to the industry or new to the idea of ‘prime contractor’, this article sets out the legal duties with respect multiple-employer worksites under the British Columbia Workers Compensation Act (the “Act”) and the regulations enacted thereunder which govern with respect to workplace health and safety in British Columbia…

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The Anatomy of a Delay Claim

As published in Northern Construction Connection February 2020 Newsletter

There are three fundamental elements of a construction contract: price, scope, and time. Contractors and owners rely on the terms of the contract to inform them of the work that is required to be performed; the price for that work; and the time frame during which the work, or other various aspects of it, are to be completed. As a result, a change to either price, scope, or time may have a significant impact on the parties’ performance under the contract….

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Smart Cities – They’re Watching You

As published in LGMA Exchange Magazine Winter 2020

Smart Cities use integrated data collection and management to track and analyze the patterns of a community to drive and power services. Some examples include pedestrian traffic sensors, mobile apps for buses and expedited handling of requests for city services. However, innovation inevitably comes with uncertainties and risks. While there is a public appetite for the convenience that technology provides, enthusiasm is tempered by the public’s concerns about privacy and cybersecurity risks, as is demonstrated by the recent news reports of the privacy controversy surrounding Toronto’s new Alphabet Company (aka Google) operated Waterfront development….

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The Legality of Holding a Grudge in Public Procurement

As published in Northern Construction Connection January 2020 Newsletter and in CBA Municipal Law Section

Due to the large volume of purchasing conducted by public entities, the likelihood of purchasing from the same pool of vendors raises the challenge of potentially selecting a bidder with whom they are (or have been) embroiled in a dispute. A strategy that some public entities have used to address this issue is to adopt the practice of including in their procurement documents a term that excludes from the bidding process those entities that are (or have been) engaged in legal proceedings against the public body, commonly referred to as a “reprisal cause”…

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