Half billion building boom

Kelowna hasn't seen a building boom like this in a decade.

Figures released by city hall this week show the value of building permits in 2016 exceeded a half-billion dollars for the first time since 2007, right before the market collapse.

Permit values last year totaled $537.5 million, significantly higher than the most recent five, and ten-year-averages.

The latest five year average is slightly less than $400 million. The value has increased steadily over the past five years, from a low of $286 million in 2012.

The city also saw more building permits issued for residential units since the late 1980's. Permits for 1,950 new units was only surpassed in 2005.

Last year's numbers also far exceeded five and 10-year-averages. Of those, 64 per cent were for multiple housing units, while nearly half were for structures with an urban or village centre.

Commercial development saw permits issued for 343,000 square feet of new floor space, slightly higher than five and 10-year-averages.

Both industrial and institutional permits were above the five-year-average, but below the most recent 10-year-average.

The boom doesn't appear to have slowed through the early months of 2017.

According to city figures, permits have been issued for 858 new residential units in 2017, a 216 per cent increase over the same period a year ago.

The complete detailed report will be presented to city council Monday afternoon.

More Kelowna News