February 2017 – Eastern Ontario – Building Permits Update


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Eastern Ontario’s ICI permit activity slowed significantly in the fourth quarter after what had been a very busy year. This was the lowest quarter for total ICI permit values since 2008. Commercial and institutional permit values also had their lowest quarters since 2008. Institutional permit values were down 44% compared to Q4 2015, while commercial permits declined by a third.  Industrial permits on the other hand were actually up by about a third year-over-year. Relative to the year’s previous three quarters though, fourth quarter industrial permit values are well below average. Eastern Ontario’s industrial permit values have been supported all year by Ottawa’s LRT project, which saw less permit activity in Q4.

Despite this weak quarter, Eastern Ontario had a good year in 2016 overall. The Ottawa LRT project led Eastern Ontario to it’s highest ever annual industrial permits total. Although commercial permit activity was low in Q4, commercial permit values had record highs earlier in the summer, and the commercial total for the year was the highest since 2013. Institutional permit values for 2016 were much lower than the previous two years, but the sector may improve in 2017. CMD Group has forecasted significant increases in 2017 construction starts for education, government offices, and hospitals.


The Eastern Region includes: Ottawa, Kingston, and Belleville



Ian Worte
Research Analyst,

Ontario Construction Secretariat (OCS)
180 Attwell Drive, Suite 360, Toronto, ON M9W 6A9
P 416.620.5210 ext. 241
F 416.620.5310