Case Study

Markham, ON

Markham, with a population of approximately 267,400 is known as the ‘High-tech Capital of Canada’ due to many head offices being located in the town. Since 1991, the town’s population has grown by 41%.

The Challenge

The building department of Markham is faced with the challenge of keeping up with growth and providing sufficient housing.

To meet the provincial Government’s legislation, the Town of Markham needed a new tool to help them report on application progress and staff workload and a way to report on building quality. 

Markham had no effective tracking method and felt that even what was being tracked was not reliable data.

“The only ‘accessible’ measure of our performance was the time elapsed between permit application and permit issuance. This was unhelpful because it also captured time spent by the customer correcting his application” explains John Wright, Director of Building Standards.

The Solution

Markham opted for CSDC’s permitting and compliance solutions application named AMANDA. AMANDA includes a Milestone Monitor module. This module helps the Government record its response time on public facing processes showing how they are efficient and accountable.  

The Details

To meet the provincial Government’s legislation, the Town of Markham needed a new tool to help report on application progress, staff workload and report on building quality. Well before the new legislation came into effect, Markham wanted to differentiate between “Good” home builders and “Bad” home builders. Good builders would be given an award – the “Markham Building Excellence Awards” to differentiate them in the market.

Markham selected AMANDA to streamline the entire permitting process, and utilized the Milestone Monitor module to help the department keep track of time spent during the permitting process.  Milestone Monitor also tracks the time an application is kept on hold while the applicant is providing information. Municipalities can also use this to compare the productivity of outside firms such as architects and consulting engineers. Milestone Monitor has already benefited CSDC clients in the Province of Ontario in complying with The Building Code Statute Act, which has been passed into law.

Bill 124 was enacted in the province of Ontario in September 2003, which set time frames within which municipal building permit decisions must be made (as short as 10 days for houses).  This became quite a difficult task for permit management systems because they couldn’t differentiate between the time that municipality spends on the file and time spent waiting for additional input from the applicant.  Using AMANDA Markham is able to conform to Bill 124.

“AMANDA and the Milestone Monitor has enabled Markham to express its performance in terms that are consistent with Bill 124’s mandatory time frames”.

John Wright 

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