Kamloops City New Building Permits on Pace to Eclipse $200 Million Mark for 2010

This article appeared in the New Home Buyers Guide of the Kamloops This Week on Friday, December 10, 2010.

Two years after the economic meltdown, it appears the recession that followed never really hit Kamloops City Hall’s building department. As the end of the year approaches, the city has handed out $187 million worth of building permits and could top the $200-million mark for just the second time.

“It looks like we went through the year and the year previous without even hitting the recession,” said David Trawin, the city’s director of development and engineering. The city had originally estimated between $120 and $140 million worth of building permits to be taken out in 2010. Last month, the city topped the $160 million in permits it handed out in 2009.

Trawin said the city could eclipse the $200-million mark by the end of the year, but that will mean a batch of projects the city was counting on for next year to keep the numbers level will make it in for December.

He predicted permit numbers will drop in 2011 to a more average year, which is roughly between $120 million and $140 million in value. The numbers at city hall continued to climb after a steady month of November. The number of single-family permits issued last month did dip to 14 from 24 in November 2009.

However, the overall construction value for the month hit $12 million, a couple million more than the $10 million the previous year. The city also issued $6 million in commercial-building permits for the month. The number of residential permits — which includes single-family and multi-family units for 2010 — has nearly doubled, to 647 from 416 in 2009.

The city has only topped $200 million in permits once — in 2008. In that year, the city doled out $207 million worth of permits, which was a record.

Before the beginning of summer, the city handed out $222.5 million in permits for 883 dwelling units in a 12-month period. That proved to be a record. The unexpected construction frenzy has also been good to the city’s coffers.

Trawin noted the city’s building-permit department will finish 2010 with an operating surplus of more than $1 million.