The City of Melfort’s latest building permit report was revealed at the latest council meeting on Nov. 5, and 2018 has not been as kind as 2017.
So far this year, the City of Melfort issued 64 permits worth close to $7 million, which is down from last year's 94 permits worth nearly $13 million for the same period.
Residential building dropped the most — the city has only issued 37 permits worth $3.5 million so far this year, which is down from last year's 67 permits worth $7 million.
Mayor Rick Lang said people aren’t moving to Saskatchewan as quickly as they once did.
“We met with our two primary communities Tisdale and Nipawin not long ago and they said the same thing,” Lang said. “It goes in cycles where you have exceptional growth for a while, and we had that same exceptional growth in the 70s and then we didn’t see it again until 2007.”
Commercial building permits are nearly identical from last year, with 13 in 2018 compared to 14 in 2017. However, the revenue drastically dropped from $4.5 million in 2017 to under $2 million in 2018.
Industrial saw a rise in building permits with six in 2018, up from just one in 2017, although the one permit last year brought in over $1 million, while the six this year is over $700,000.
Lang said the low year for building permits is a concern, especially for residential units, but it’s not something the city should have a knee jerk reaction to.
“I would say this is, I hope, an unusual year in a sense that we’ve been trying to deal with developmental permit fees, looking at different issues for contracts, added costs, and what can we do about that. We’re looking at possible solutions but making sure that we don’t do anything rash that going to be a detriment to the community itself, because everything has to be in balance,” Lang said.
While the prediction is residential growth could still be lower next year, Lang hopes and expects commercial growth to grow in 2019, leading to a potential record year for overall growth in terms of total dollar permits.
On Twitter: @SchulzePANow
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