Entries in funding (2)


Peterborough needs more than a road win

The provincial government is going to be spending the summer hosting roundtables on the infrastructure needs of communities.  The Minister of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure along with the Minister of Transportation are looking for input on how to keep “moving Ontario forward” outside the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA).   The goal is to help create jobs and support economic growth through infrastructure projects in our communities, and they are starting with three discussion questions:prioritizing infrastructure investments, and improving natural gas programs and transportation networks.  The government has earmarked $15 billion to be available for projects outside the GTHA.

There are some projects that have already started including four in the County and City of Peterborough.  Three address sewer and water system concerns and one is to complete bridge improvements.  These initiatives were announced in February as part of the $100 million per year Ontario Community Infrastructure Fund.   

There is also $272 million available over 10 years to support projects in communities with populations under 100,000, $1 billion for strategic transportation infrastructure development in the Ring of Fire Region, $62 million to support the Ottawa River Action Plan and $15 million annually for the new Connecting Links program to help pay for the construction and repair costs of municipal roads that connect communities to provincial highways (Moving Ontario Forward – Outside the GTHA Discussion Guide). 

Within these programs there is opportunity for Peterborough area municipalities to put forward projects, but ultimately we're still on the outside looking in, particularly when you look at the most recent transportation investments: 

  • Expanding Highway 11/17 between Thunder Bay and Nipigon
  • Constructing a new alignment of Highway 7 between Kitchener and Guelph
  • Improving Highway 401 in London and Highway 417 in Ottawa
  • Supporting the Maley Drive Extension project in Sudbury 
  • Advancing an environmental assessment for a high-speed rail line that will connect Windsor, London, Kitchener-Waterloo and Toronto.  

Take a look at the projects above.  What’s missing?  There is an extensive network of roads and rail currently planned for south- and northwestern Ontario, but the eastern side of the province seems to barely register.  

One of the most important questions the government is asking in its Discussion Guide is “What is the long-term future of your transportation network, and how can Moving Ontario Forward support that?”

Yes, the 407 is scheduled to be completed to the 35/115 by 2020, and while it’s an important economic link for this region, it was a decade long battle to convince the province of its importance to Ontario and one could argue that it has greater significance to the Durham Region. At a time when the goal is to move Ontario forward as a province, as a whole, there seems to be a fairly gaping hole in the plan.  In fact, that combination of roads and rail we’re seeing develop in southwestern Ontario can easily be developed in eastern Ontario.  Add in the constant expansion at the Peterborough Airport and Peterborough could easily be declared a transportation hub.      

With its diverse business community, Peterborough has a lot of opportunity in its future. Our post-secondary institutions are growing; Fleming with its focus on the skilled trades is at the frontline of a Canada battling a skills shortage and Trent is further solidifying its reputation for groundbreaking life sciences research, a strong business school and research on the Canadian North and Aboriginal peoples.  

We have an Innovation Cluster that is working hard to develop a new generation of technology companies.    

There is a strong advanced manufacturing sector based in Eastern Ontario that is reaching out beyond our provincial borders.  In fact, this group of employers along with the Chamber Network just affected a change to the requirements for bringing service technicians to Canada for repair and servicing of equipment.  The change means these instances will not require a Labour Market Impact Assessment, saving companies thousands of dollars.  

In the Peterborough Economic Development Strategic Plan, agriculture, aerospace, and entrepreneurship were identified as areas and sectors ready to grow and take flight.  These areas have also been identified as priority areas by the provincial and federal governments.   

So in answering the question "What is the long-term future of your transportation network?", the
Peterborough area is ready to create several connections to and through eastern Ontario with a completed 407, the Shining Waters Railway and the Peterborough Airport. Doing so opens up a whole host of economic opportunity and fills a glaring gap with people and jobs.     

The provincial government is accepting comments until September 18, 2015.

Comment through the "Peterborough Chamber" group of LinkedIn. 


Enabling Accessibility in workplaces funding available

Provided by: Mark Buffone, Accessibility Compliance Coordinator, City of Peterborough 

There is an open call for proposals to receive funding from the Federal government for projects that improve accessibility in workplaces. Full details available at:


Tips on applying:

1. Funding for projects for renovation, retrofit or new construction in which job opportunities for people with disabilities could be created or maintained. Includes provision of assistive technologies, professional fees, consultants.

2. Organizations can submit one application only.

3. Federal goverment will fund up to $50,000. Minimum 50% of the project costs to be by others.

4. Open to small businesses only (not-for-profit organizations are not eligible)

5. Project duration must be a maximum of 52 weeks.

Furthermore, Employment and Social Development developed the following criteria: 

For the purpose of this CFP, systemic barriers are defined as:

Limitations that prevent people with disabilities from accessing job opportunities, advancement
opportunities, or limitations that prevent improving the current employment status of people with disabilities or prevent them from maintaining their position within an organization as a result of design elements of workplaces. Such elements include, but are not limited to, disability/adaptive aids and assistive technology devices, stairs, doorways, the width of hallways and levelled room layouts, and equipment not designed with accessibility principles in mind.

Responding to systemic accessibility issues in workplaces means that projects must be geared towards activities that can serve to improve the accessibility and safety of all current and future employees with disabilities, as opposed to one individual’s specific accommodation needs.

For the purpose of this CFP, assistive technologies are defined as:

Accessible information and communication technology media aimed at increasing accessibility for people with disabilities to information and/or communication. Technologies include, but are not limited to, FM loop systems, visual-audible alarm signal devices, special computer software and peripheral hardware (e.g. speech recognition and/or screen enlargement software or device, electronic reader or audio description program, etc.).

Deadline for applications:
Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 11:59pm EST

Comment through the "Peterborough Chamber" group of LinkedIn.