Homes fuel year of building

The amount of construction going on in the desert certainly was not dry in 2017, as year-end numbers showed in two South Okanagan towns.

In Oliver, 101 building permits were issued last year, worth a collective $15.6 million.

In Osoyoos, meanwhile, 97 building permits approved were worth just over $14.2 million.

Those building permit values compare to $9.8 million in Oliver in 2016 and $6.9 million in Osoyoos in 2016, respectively. 

And in both towns, new residential homes fuelled the value of construction going on. 

Close to half of Oliver's permits issued, 45, were labelled as new residences. Those new homes were collectively valued at $11.9 million, and were more than four-times the 11 homes built in 2016.

Six multi-tenant permits also issued were worth $2.5 million in Oliver, meaning construction of homes made up about 92 per cent of the value of all permits. 

A good chunk of those permits issued, 33, were also for residential improvements.

Town manager Cathy Cowan said the 101 permits issued made 2017 one of the busiest years ever for construction in Oliver.

For Osoyoos, 25 new single-family homes accounted for $9.1 million of all values — more than 64 per cent.

Town manager Barry Romanko said the value of building permits there weren't boom numbers in 2017, but were the highest in more than a decade.

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