Class Environmental Assessment

The Conditions of Approval for the Bradford Bypass 2002 EA approval required update of the 1997 EA Study Report by the completion of a new Class EA prior to starting construction of this highway. AECOM, MTO’s project consultants were hired by MTO in 2019 to undertake the required Class EA for this highway. AECOM issued a Notice of Study Commencement in September 2020. 


A Cass EA is essentially a abbreviated form of a full Environmental Assessment under the legislation in effect at the time of it’s commencement. It essentially allows the proponent to focus on a pre-determined (approved) corridor thus avoiding the added work that would be required for a larger study area as is the case with a full environmental assessment.


The Provincial Environmental Assessment Act was significantly amended in  2019, presumably after AECOM’s engagement by MTO. These legislative amendments essentially gutted the prior act by eliminating a significant number of internationally endorsed environmental safeguards. These amendments are addressed in the government’s positing to the Environmental Bill of Rights Registry under the heading: Modernizing Ontario’s environmental assessment program – Environmental Assessment Act.


AECOM’s contract requires them to undertake the following studies to satisfy the requirements of the Class EA:

[Note: links are provided for studies completed prior to the release of the Draft Environmental Conditions Report. – These studies are dated 2020]

  • Agricultural Impact Assessment
  • Air Quality Impact Assessment
  • Archaeological Assessment (Stages 2, 3, & 4, as required)
  • Cultural Heritage Assessment
  • Drainage and Hydrology
  • Erosion and Sediment Control Risk Assessment
  • Fish and Fish Habitat Existing Conditions and Impact Assessment Report
  • Fluvial Geomorphology
  • Groundwater Impact Assessment
  • Land Use and Property Impact Assessment
  • Noise and Vibration Impact Assessment
  • Preliminary Landscape Composition Plan
  • Snowdrift Assessment
  • Terrestrial Ecosystems Existing Conditions and Impact Assessment Report (including an assessment of vegetation and vegetation communities, wildlife and wildlife habitat, species at risk and designated natural areas)
  • Waste and Excess Materials Management Plan