Multi-family construction declines
Down 70 per cent in first six months compared to 2012
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.
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.