The building industry and municipalities track building permits hawkishly. The cities need to know if they need more or fewer planners on the job, as well as belt-tightening all around if construction slows down. Builders want to know what everyone else is up to and whether there’s a glut of condos coming on.
Vancouver got the ball rolling for me on this topic recently by issuing a news release noting that the value of buildings for permits in the first half of 2012 were in the $1-billion plus range. (Original news release here.) That got me wondering what was going on with other municipalities. Were they seeing returns to pre-recession levels, still struggling or had they recovered even faster?
My story here has the results of my little research foray. For numbers junkies, here are the sites I went to: Richmond, which had fabulously complete stats, right down to individual addresses; Surrey, and Metro Vancouver. Vancouver’s new release is here and its historic stats (which you can’t find by going to the menu on the main website, oh, no, that would make it too easy) are here.