Issue 18-173 Building Permits

October 10, 2018

The value of building permits jumped 31.5% (seasonally adjusted) in August from the previous month. There were increases in permits for commercial (+97.5%), institutional (+62.2%), industrial (+29.2%), and residential (+16.5%) projects. The value of permits climbed in Vancouver (+66.4%), where most of the province’s building activity occurs, as well as in Abbotsford-Mission (+10.7%). Kelowna (‑14.5%) and Victoria (‑9.2%) saw a decrease in building permits.

Nationally, building permits increased by 0.4% in August. There was growth in British Columbia (+31.5%), Manitoba (+14.9%), and Alberta (+1.9%). Conversely, the value of permits contracted in Saskatchewan (‑11.3%), the Atlantic Provinces (‑8.6%), Quebec (‑8.2%), and Ontario (‑8.2%).

Regional Building Permits

Through August of 2018, the value of building permits issued in the province’s regions climbed 20.4% (unadjusted) above the level recorded twelve months earlier. Investment intentions were up in most regions ranging from 8.1% in Thompson/Okanagan to 287.2% in North Coast. Planned spending rose in Mainland/Southwest (+23.1%), where increases in commercial (+49.5%) and residential (+23.5%) building permits offset decreases for institutional (‑19.2%) and industrial (‑19.2%) projects. Overall permits increased in Cariboo (+53.6%), Vancouver Island/Coast (+14.7%), and Kootenay (+12.6%), while the Nechako (‑50.8%) and Northeast (‑18.1%) regions saw a decline in the value of permits.

Data Source: Statistics Canada (Regional data produced by BC Stats from unpublished data)