Aug 5, 2021: Building Permits (Jun 2021)

August 5, 2021

Statistics Canada released June’s building permit data yesterday, revealing that in the first half of 2021 (January-June), Ontario’s ICI building permits were up by 3.1% compared to the first half of 2020. Industrial permit values in Ontario have increased by 20.7% in 2021 over the first half of 2020, while institutional permits rose by 17.5%. Ontario’s commercial sector was the only one to see permit values fall, down by 7.2% compared to the first half of 2020.

While Ontario’s commercial permit values were down compared to 2020, these values were almost exactly the same as in first half of 2019 (+0.04%). Total ICI permit values in 2021 in Ontario were also on par with the first half of 2019 (+0.12%), Overall, ICI permit values in Ontario amounted to $7.52 billion in the first half of 2021, breaking the previous first-half record set in 2019. Industrial permit values were down by 18.0% in 2021 compared to the first half of 2019, and institutional permit values up by 23.6%.

Between the first and second quarters of 2021, Ontario’s ICI permit values fell by 4.0%, amounting to $3.84 billion in Q1 and $3.68 billion in Q2. Industrial permit values fell by 20.1% between Q1 and Q2, while institutional permit values declined by 4.7%. Ontario’s commercial permit values increased by 3.1% in Q2 over Q1. Commercial permit values have been relatively stable over the past few quarters in Ontario. Permit totals in the sector have amounted to about $2 billion four of the past five quarters, the outlier being $2.5 billion posted in Q3 2020.

At the metro level, ICI permit values have increased in the first half of 2021 over 2020 in eleven of Ontario’s sixteen metro areas. ICI permit values were up slightly compared to the first half of last year in Oshawa (+1%), Windsor (+5%), Kitchener-Cambridge-Waterloo (+6%) and Greater Sudbury (+7%). Double-digit ICI permit value increases over the first half of 2020 were observed in Peterborough (+18%), London (+20%) Thunder Bay (+25%), Belleville (+27%), Hamilton (+35%) and Barrie (+74%). ICI permit values more than doubled in Kingston (+130%) in the first half of 2021 compared to 2020. Conversely, ICI permit values are down in the first half of 2021 over 2020 in Toronto (-5%), St. Catharines-Niagara (-37%), Ottawa (-42%), Brantford (-43%) and Guelph (-62%).



Katherine Jacobs
Director of Research

Ontario Construction Secretariat (OCS)
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