Non-residential Intentions Drive Building Permit Increase

The total value of building permits rose 21 per cent to a record $12.4 billion in February, with British Columbia (which was up 130.2 per cent) leading the way, says Statistics Canada. Construction intentions in the residential sector were up 9.8 per cent, while the non-residential sector jumped 43.2 per cent, driven mainly by large hospital permits in British Columbia and Quebec. Construction intentions in February for the residential sector rose 9.8 per cent to $7.5 billion at the national level, with nine provinces reporting gains. Gains in multi-family permit values in British Columbia reversed January's decline and contributed to the 18.5 per cent increase at the national level, along with the gains in seven other provinces. The total value of single-family home permits rose 1.5 per cent in February. Seven provinces reported increases. The value of commercial permits gained 5.6 per cent in February at the national level, with six provinces reporting increases. The total value of industrial building intentions fell 27.9 per cent mostly due to declines of 44.8 per cent in Quebec and 28.8 per cent in Ontario.