Calgary’s development and construction industry strong through 2022: a year in review

Last year was another great year for Calgary’s development and construction industry despite challenges such as skilled labour shortages, high material costs and limited availability of supplies and equipment, our city continued to grow and significant investments towards its future made. 

“The development and construction industry remained strong in 2022 and similar growth and momentum is expected in 2023,” says Ulrik Seward, Manager of Business and Building Safety. “The future of Calgary is dependent on the strong partnerships we have developed with industry.”

Our city’s growth is evident with 18,855 building permits issued in 2022 totalling $5.5 billion. Commercial multi-residential projects were up nine per cent from 2021. Building permits for single and semi-detached homes were down two per cent from 2021, but up 32 per cent from the five-year average, totalling 5,418 permits.

Trade, building and development inspection volumes also reflect the booming 2022 construction season in Calgary. A total of 204,844 inspections were completed in 2022, up 14 per cent from 179,447 in 2021.

“The City processed a large volume of permit applications and inspections in 2022,” says Seward, “To support the growing demand we’ve realigned planning and approvals expertise, inspection services, and business supports into cross-functional teams to deliver upon and improve service delivery to our customers.”

Between July 2021 and July 2022, Calgary grew by over 42,000 residents, representing the single largest growth year in our city’s history. While housing prices and rent costs have been on the rise, in part due to dramatic population growth, Calgary remains one of the most affordable big city housing markets with a very strong income to housing cost ratio.

In 2022, Council approved over $375 million for new community investments. These new areas of the city will be able to accommodate 490,000 people over the next 20-30 years. In the shorter term, we have made these areas “development ready” by investing in water and sanitary pipes, fire stations and transportation access. These development ready areas can accommodate over 190,000 people over the next decade.

To further support our city’s growth, several notable projects were completed in 2022. The City issued occupancy for major projects such Calgary Cancer Centre, a $868.3 million centre providing access to comprehensive cancer care services in a world-class facility. Additionally, The City issued occupancy for Mathison Hall, a $62.8 million addition to the Haskayne School of Business offering a new, exciting business education experience.

Additional occupancies, with construction values exceeding $25 million, include:

·       Curtis Block, a 36-storey apartment building in Beltline - $165.3 million

·       West Village Towers, 236 units in Downtown West End - $118.7 million

·       Amazon Distribution centre, a 2.6-million square foot warehouse in East Shepard Industrial – $400 million

·       Mixed-Use Highrise, 369 units in Beltline - $95.3 million

·       One Tower Alberta, 379 rental units above commercial and retail space in Beltline - $91.6 million

·       MacKimmie Link & Block, a four-storey University of Calgary building - $78.5 million

·       Trico Communities Building 4 & 5, two residential apartment buildings with a combined 122 units - $68.2 million

·       Calgary Student Residence, 348 units on Banff Trail - $61.2 million

More information on building permit application values is available by ward, and community, on Data on building permit values is also available on the open data catalogue.