Ontario Environment Assessment Act (OEAA)

An Environmental Assessment, or EA, is a decision-making process used to promote good environmental planning by assessing the potential effects of certain activities on the environment. In Ontario Environmental Assessments are defined and authorized under the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act (OEAA), R.S.O. 1990. To fulfill the requirements of the OEAA, MTO developed the Class Environmental Assessment for Provincial Transportation Facilities (2000) process.

Class EA Process

The study has followed the approved planning process for a Group 'B' project in accordance with the Class Environmental Assessment for Provincial Transportation Facilities (2000) [Class EA]. The purpose of the Class EA process is to ensure that governments and public bodies consider potential environmental effects before an infrastructure project begins.

As part of the Class EA process for Group “B” projects there are opportunities for public input throughout the study (See the Consultation section for details).

This Class EA process has three major phases; Planning, Preliminary Design, and Detail Design. This project will build on the work completed during QEW/Glendale Avenue Intersection Reconstruction Preliminary Design and Class Environmental Assessment as documented in the 2018 Transportation Environmental Study Report available in the Documents page.

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Municipal Class Environment Assessment (MCEA)

The Ontario MEA MCEA document (October 2000, as amended in 2007, 2011 and 2015) provides municipalities with a five-phase planning procedure, approved under the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act, to plan and undertake all municipal projects that occur frequently, are usually limited in scale and have a predictable range of environmental impacts and applicable mitigation measures.

The MCEA process ensures that all projects are carried out with effectiveness, efficiency and fairness. This process serves as a mechanism for understanding economic, social and environmental concerns while implementing improvements to municipal infrastructure.

Being that the EA was completed for the Niagara Region under the MCEA, it will proceed to the implementation state under this project.

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The Detail Design phase of the environmental assessment process will include input from engineering and environmental specialists in the areas of coastal engineering, off-shore structural engineering, road and traffic engineering, electrical engineering and, above-water and underwater inspection and surveying, building and services, geotechnical and foundation engineering, land use, noise, landscape, contaminated property, groundwater, water quality and drainage, aquatic and terrestrial biology, wildlife and birds, cultural heritage, and archaeology.

With the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, a round of Public Information Centres (PIC) and Public Education Session (PES) may likely be held virtually. Discussions with MTO will occur in advance of each event to determine if a virtual event is required. The date of the PIC and PES will be determined prior to the completion of the DDI.

A Design and Construction Report (DCR) will be prepared at the end of the study and be available for a 45-day Public Review Period. The DCR documents the entire study process, including a detailed description of the Design and details of environmental impacts and proposed methods to reduce, minimize, or avoid impacts. Advance notice of the PIC, PES and DCR review period will be placed in this publication and mailed to individuals and organizations on the project's stakeholder mailing list, once details become known.