December 13, 2013 - 9:52 AM
VERNON - According to staff reporting, 2013 has so far seen the lowest value of building permits in eight years—but a city planner warns not to jump to conclusions.
To date, staff have recorded $48,020,085 in building permits, quite a reduction from years like 2008 and 2009 when values hovered around $168,000,000.
City planning director Kim Flick says it’s important to note the value of building permits is different from the number of permits handed out.
She noted that in a community the size of Vernon, one or two large sized developments—like Sparkling Hills with its $55 million permit—have a big impact on the overall annual value. This year didn’t boast any such large-scale developments.
Flick also pointed out a shift in development activity, where they’re seeing fewer commercial builds and more investment in renovations, as well as a slight increase in housing starts.
A Conference Board of Canada report released last May stated Vernon’s economy has been contracting for the last five years. At that time, city staff were skeptical of what data the board used in generating the report, noting that building activity had been stable in the last few years.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013