Canadian Consulting Engineer

Building permits for 2015 show decline in non-residential sector

February 9, 2016

Statistics Canada had no big surprises when it published its figures for building permits for the year 2015.

The value of all building permits issued by municipalities in 2015 was unchanged from 2014, totalling $85 billion. While residential construction permits rose 4.4%, the growth was offset by a 6.3% decline in the non-residential component.

In the non-residential sector, permits declined 6.3% from 2014 to $31.8 billion in 2015. Decreases were posted in every component, led by commercial buildings.

Institutional building permits in Quebec posted the largest decline. Six provinces reported lower construction intentions for non-residential buildings.


In the residential sector, permits were up 4.4% from 2014, continuing an upward trend that started in 2010. In 2015, the value of residential permits rose in three provinces: Ontario, British Columbia and Nova Scotia. Alberta (-8.9%) reported the largest decline, its first decrease since 2009. The total value of residential permits was $53.2 billion.

For the month of December 2015, the value of building permits rose 11.3% following a $19.9% decline the previous month. Non-residential building permits in the month were up by 2.5%, with six provinces reporting gains, led by Alberta.

To see the release, click here.


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