Multi-fam­ily con­struc­tion de­clines

Down 70 per cent in first six months com­pared to 2012

Calgary Herald New Condos - - New Condos - JOSH SKAPIN

Con­struc­tion starts of mul­ti­fam­ily homes in the Calgary area de­clined dur­ing the first six months of 2013 com­pared to the same time last year, says a fed­eral agency.

From Jan. 1 to the end of June, 2,477 multi-fam­ily units broke ground in the cen­sus metropoli­tan area, down 70 per cent from 4,214 con­struc­tion starts last year, says Canada Mort­gage and Hous­ing Corp.

The cen­sus metropoli­tan area in­cludes neigh­bour­ing cities and towns such as Air­drie, Cochrane and Ch­ester­mere.

Part of the rea­son for this year’s de­cline is that 2012 was busier than aver­age for new multi-fam­ily de­vel­op­ments, says se­nior mar­ket an­a­lyst Richard Cho of CMHC.

“When we com­pare 2012, which was quite el­e­vated, we’re go­ing to see more of a pro­nounced de­cline — but when we look back over 10 years, we’re only down by about nine per cent.”

The 10-year aver­age for mul­ti­fam­ily con­struc­tion starts be­tween Jan. 1 and the end of June is 2,731.

Com­pared to con­struc­tion ac­tiv­ity last year, the big­gest de­cline in multi-fam­ily hous­ing was due to condo apart­ments.

Apart­ments starts de­clined to 1,004 dur­ing the first six months in 2013, down 184 per cent com­pared to 2,860 dur­ing the same pe­riod last year. Town­homes also de­clined to 749 from Jan. 1 to the end of June, eas­ing 18 per cent from 882 dur­ing the same span in 2012.

The only multi-fam­ily hous­ing type to rise was du­plexes. Dur­ing the first six months of this year, 724 du­plexes broke ground, up 53 per cent from 472 starts a year ear­lier.

The de­cline in con­struc­tion of multi-fam­ily de­vel­op­ment con­tin­ued in June when 358 units broke ground in the Calgary area, down 82 per cent from 653 starts dur­ing the same month in 2012.

Like the over­all trend this year, in June du­plexes were the only multi-fam­ily hous­ing type to step up con­struc­tion from 2012. Last month, 140 du­plexes broke ground, a 37 per cent climb from 102 in June 2012.

Mean­while, town­home starts de­clined to 79 last month, down 196 per cent from 234 dur­ing the same month last year.

Apart­ment con­struc­tion also de­clined to 139 starts last month, down 128 per cent from 140 dur­ing the same time last year.

Pho­tos, Calgary Her­ald/files

Much of the de­cline was due to an 184 per cent drop in the con­struc­tion of condo apart­ments.

Last year was busier than aver­age, says Richard Cho of CMHC.

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