On-Site Magazine

Residential and industrial components drag July construction intentions down

By Adam Freill   

Commercial Construction Industrial Institutional Residential

Building permits dropped almost 7 per cent on the month as declines hit both the residential and non-residential sectors.

(Source: Statistics Canada, Table 34-10-0066-01, Building permits, by type of structure and type of work.)

The total value of building permits in Canada dipped by 6.6 per cent in July, to $11.2 billion, as declines in both the residential and non-residential sectors contributed to the slip.

The residential sector was off 8.6 per cent, at $7.6 billion, while the non-residential sector had a more modest fall, dropping 2.1 per cent to $3.6 billion.

In the non-residential components, gains in the commercial and institutional sectors were more than offset by losses in industrial permits, resulting in a modest 2.1 per cent slip.

The value of building permits in the industrial component tumbled 16.9 per cent as a 31.1 per cent drop in Ontario, its third consecutive monthly decline, weighted heavily on the numbers. After nearing the billion-dollar mark back in January and April, the component has returned to more typical levels.


Commercial permit values edged up 0.1 per cent on strength in Alberta resulting from a number of permits issued in Calgary and Edmonton.

Construction intentions in the institutional component jumped 7.9 per cent, with British Columbia leading the charge with a 207.2 per cent jump. Weak results in June, as well as several large permits, contributed to the significant increase in July.

Strong gains in intentions in the residential markets in British Columbia and Quebec were more than offset by weak construction intentions in six other provinces.

In the single-family homes component, construction intentions declined 5.7 per cent as Ontario’s near-14 per cent drop more than offset the gains in six provinces. Despite the decline, this component remained 14.8 per cent higher than the same month of 2021.

The value of building permits in the multi-family homes component was also down significantly as six provinces posted drops, including a sizable 32.8 per cent fall in Ontario, pacing the component to an 11.1 per cent fall. British Columbia was a bright spot, however, as a number of permits for condos and apartments pushed the province’s permits value up 9.3 per cent.




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