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CAPITAL INVESTMENT is a key indicator of growth and building permits are a traditional indicator of a local investment and economic health. From January to June 30th 2016, the City issued 143 permits valued at $21,405,233 compared to 156 permits issued for the same period in 2015 valued at $26,377,493. June was the first month to show poorer performance than the year before in terms of building permit values thanks so a significant decline in the building permit value for Commercial and Industrial projects, to $5,580,3453 from $10,418,900 recorded in the first half of 2015. Building permits related to residential construction for the first half of 2016 totaled $14,464,391 and included a new apartment building; this compares to $15,803,593 for the same period in 2015. Unfortunately, Moose Jaw’s economy like the province’s, is recoiling from low energy and potash prices.
HISTORICAL BUILDING PERMIT ACTIVITY (2001 – 2015) The value of 2015 building permits totaled $53.3M. The value of building permits in 2013 ($96.1M) and then again in 2014 ($131.5M) set records. The value of Moose Jaw building permits in 2014 were up over 600% compared to 2001 ($13.1M). In 2001, building permits totaled $13.5M.
2016 MOOSE JAW SINGLE DWELLING HOUSING STARTS Housing starts are regarded as an indicator of a region’s economic vitality. CMHC is forecasting stable housing activity in 2016 -17 but reported “moderate” evidence of overbuilding and “strong” evidence of overvaluation in some markets within the province. In the province the number of new single and multi-family units dropped by 66 percent in 2015 compared to a year earlier. This scaling back of construction has helped reduce inventory going into 2016, and the pace of new residential construction has improved but even so the trend of more homes for sale than buyers is likely for 2016.
Moose Jaw seems to be bucking the trend where others cities are seeing a drop in housing starts linked to a decline in demand. In Moose Jaw, year to date building permits show 30 permits for new dwellings valued at $13,264,519 compared to only 20 permits for new dwelling for the same period in 2015, valued at $5,614,875.
2016 MULTI-FAMILY UNITS The construction of two 16-unit rental apartments – in adding to the one built in 2015 - in West Park helped drive up 2016’s residential construction values. Even so construction of multi-family condo units is expected to remain slow in 2016 as the inventory of existing condos or nearly completed condos motivates builders moderate the pace of new projects.
2015 MULTI-FAMILY UNITS Building of condos is a trend in reaction to the need for more affordable housing.
Locally there has been a dramatic increase in number of MLS sales of multi-family residential units. In 2015 the city had several new condo developments built: a 24 condo development project ($3.5M northeast), a 25-unit bungalow condo project (southwest), a 4 unit condo and 24-unit rental apartment (northwest).
Several multi-family residential projects have been built in recent years: Caleb’s $4M 94-unit seniors living complex; West Park Village; Renovated apartments – (40 units) Scott Block Main & High Street; 12-plex condo apartments on Home Street W; new apartments on Byrne Street; new six-plex on Caribou St W.; New Rock Developments Creekstone Villas (34 townhouse condos); New Rock Developments Creekstone Estates (24 bungalow condos); renovated rental apartments at 822 Main St. N; six modular units at 4th Ave SW; conversion of Grandview United Church SW into five suites; 3-unit townhouse Hodges Crescent; and 15 modular rental apartments on Avens Road and a proposed 24 unit apartment complex. The $7M Brightwater Seniors Living opens in 2016 in the West Park area a number of new group homes are built; Saskatchewan Housing Corporation (SHC) constructed 91 new social housing rental apartments, with 16 units at 55 River Park Drive; 36 modular units at 821 Chester Road and 39 units at 11 Avenue SW. SHC has sold off many of its 114 older single family homes with many existing tenants purchasing their homes.
THE RECORD FOR DWELLINGS STARTS WAS
SET DURING 2012 WITH 132 STARTS.
New residential construction continues in new neighbourhoods, such as Iron Bridge, West Park and New Rock subdivisions.
HISTORICAL BUILDING PERMIT ACTIVITY 2001 – 2015 The value of building permits in 2013 ($96.1M) and then again in 2014 ($131.5M) set records. In 2001 the value of Moose Jaw building permits $13.5M.
City of Moose Jaw Permit - Year over Year Comparison (2001 –2015)
Building Permit Report on Housing Starts (2012-16)
New Residential Construction