On-Site Magazine

Building construction investment slides in February

By Adam Freill   

Commercial Construction Industrial Institutional Residential

Declines in multi-unit residential, industrial and commercial segments pull overall building construction investment figures down.

Investment in non-residential building construction, February 2024. (Source: Statistics Canada, Table 34-10-0286-01 – Investment in Building Construction.)

Investment in building construction declined by a little over one per cent in February, reports Statistics Canada. The 1.1 per cent drop from January brought the monthly figure to $19.3 billion. Declines were felt in both the residential and non-residential sectors.

Investment in residential building construction decreased by 1.2 per cent, or $157 million, to come in at $13.4 billion. February was a second consecutive monthly decline for housing. Nationally, investment in detached single-family homes increased 1.3 per cent to $6.7 billion in February, with all provinces and territories apart from Yukon reporting gains for this component. At the same time, multi-unit investment decreased 3.5 per cent to $6.7 billion, driven by declines in Ontario and Quebec as the pace of new starts slowed from earlier in 2023.

Despite the decline, condo and rental apartment investment was 8.4 per cent higher than February of 2023. That $251 million jump was not enough to offset declines posted by single-home and row-home segments of the market.

Investment in the non-residential sector fell by $52 million in February, to sit at $6 billion. A gain of $29 million in the institutional component, which reached $1.7 billion, was outweighed by investment declines in the industrial and commercial segments, which came in at $1.3 billion and $3 billion, respectively.


The decline in commercial investment for February represented the eighth consecutive monthly drop. Seven provinces contributed to the negative movement.

Year-over-year, commercial was down by 7.3 per cent from February of last year, while industrial and institutional investments were both higher. The industrial segment gained 9.3 per cent, while institutional investment grew by 18 per cent.




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