Homes lead building spike

Oliver has seen a rapid increase in construction this year, largely connected to a jump in building permits for new homes.

In a report containing data through to the end of October, town staff have approved 92 building permits this year, valued at $14.2M — compared to a building permit value of $9.2M through 10 months of 2016.

Of those 92 building permits, 33 have been labelled as 'new home construction,' making up just under $10M.

Five more building permits have been for triplexes and quadplexes, making up another $2.5M.

"And it's not slowing down either, there's still more subdivisions coming in that I've been working on myself," Oliver town manager Cathy Cowan said, noting plans to be finalized for a 19-lot subdivision on Meadows Drive and a 14-lot subdivision on Princess Place.

Cowan said this month, Oliver will hit 100 building permits for the year, something hardly seen in the town.

"(The building inspector) said even back in the day when it was busy before 2008, he never hit 100."

The building spike in the community is expected to last a couple years, according to Cowan.

Not included yet on Oliver's building permit value in 2017 is a new Coast Hotel worth $8M, a permit that is expected to be finalized later this year.

Cowan said the increase in construction is good for the community, and said Oliver has the land base to handle the growth.

The increase in Oliver's value of building permits, about $5M more than 2016 so far, is comparable to a building spike in Osoyoos, where the building permit value is close to double what is was last year. 

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