B.C. commercial building permits break record

Statistics Canada data for November show the province issued the highest value of commercial building permits on record

The value of permits issued for commercial buildings in B.C. has never been higher.

New commercial permits topped $564 million in November, a 130% increase over October, according to Statistics Canada. The agency reported that a $240-million permit for a new office tower in the Greater Vancouver region contributed most to the gain.

Total non-residential permits – which include commercial, institutional and industrial developments – reached nearly $742 million, a 75% increase over the month before.

B.C. accounted for most of the national increase in non-residential building permit values, which rose 11.6% in November to $3.3 billion.

Not all B.C. values rose.

Month to month, the value of permits for residential buildings fell 27% to $893 million. The decline was driven primarily by a drop in permit values for single family dwellings, which fell 30%.

Victoria, Vancouver among top national permit issuers

At the regional level, Victoria and Vancouver saw the third and fourth largest year-over-year gains for total permit values.

In Victoria, November values rose 72.6% over 2017. In Vancouver, they were up 63.4%.

Both regions were behind only Quebec, where values rose 177.3%, and Brantford, where values increased by 158.2%.

In total, Canadian municipalities issued $8.3 billion in building permits in November, up 2.6% from October and 6.6% over 2017.

hwoodin@biv.com
@hayleywoodin