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Building permits up 11.1 per cent in December


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February 7, 2012 by Andrew Snook

Building permit values hit their highest level since June 2007, with municipalities issuing $6.8 billion worth of permits in December, an 11.1-per cent increase from November.
According to a recent report by Statistics Canada, the jump in permit values was largely due to increases in multi-family dwellings in Ontario and commercial buildings in Alberta.
Growth in Ontario fuelled a 16.1-per cent increase in residential sector permits in December, which jumped $4.5 billion for its second consecutive monthly increase.
Major condominium and apartment building in Ontario led a 28.9-per cent increase to $1.9 billion for multi-family dwellings, the highest level recorded since December 2005.
Permits for the non-residential sector increased 2.8 per cent to $2.4 billion, after declining 15.1 per cent in November. Alberta had a large increase in building permits, offsetting declines in most provinces.
Five provinces had increases in total values of building permits, led by Ontario, Alberta and Quebec. The largest decreases were in British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. All three provinces had decreases in residential and non-residential building permits.

Municipalities
Municipalities approved 19,015 permits for new construction in December, an increase of 13 per cent from November. The increase was fuelled by a 19.1-per cent jump in multi-family dwellings to 11,560 units. Single-family dwellings went up 4.7 per cent to 7,455 units.
Following two monthly declines, building permit values in the commercial sector increased 41 per cent, led by a boost in construction intentions for office buildings and warehouse facilities in Alberta, and hotels in Ontario.
Industrial building permits fell for the second consecutive month in December, dropping 24.2 per cent to $353 million.
The decrease was largely due to a drop in construction intentions in all provinces other than Quebec. Alberta, Ontario and British Columbia had the largest declines in permits.
The value of institutional building permits fell by 42.2 per cent to $402 million.
It was the second consecutive monthly decline for the sector, since it peaked in October 2011 with a value of more than $1 billion. The biggest declines were in educational institutions in Ontario, health care facilities in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and government buildings in British Columbia.
Total value of permits increased in 17 of 34 municipalities, with the biggest gains in Toronto and Calgary. Ottawa and Vancouver had the largest declines.
To view the entire Statistics Canada report, click here.


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