Q2 2023 sees strong demand for construction in Calgary

Fresh off another busy quarter, Calgary continues seeing strong demand for development. This reinforces that Calgary is a top destination for people to live and do business.

The City of Calgary received 8,206 residential building permit applications in the first six months of 2023, as well as 1,686 non-residential building permit applications. Year over year, building permit applications were seven per cent lower than last year. However, construction value increased by 13 per cent:

·       January to June 2023: $2.98 billion

·       January to June 2022: $2.63 billion

According to Statistics Canada, Calgary's construction value contributed an eight per cent increase to Alberta’s permit values for the first five months of the year. This increase offset a decline in other metropolitan centres and propelled Alberta to the strongest position for building permit values in Western Canada.

“The values we are seeing are a promising indication that developers are committed to building more homes for Calgarians, both those living here today and the many thousands we expect to welcome in coming years,” says Stuart Dalgleish, General Manager of Planning & Development Services. “While our permit volumes are slightly lower than the previous year, the notable uptick in construction value highlights the quality and scale of projects being built.”

From April to June of 2023, Calgary builders and developers submitted 1,533 single construction, 309 multi-residential and 1,273 commercial/multi-family building permits. Proposals to redesignate land also saw an increase of 55 per cent over the same period last year, with 90 applications submitted.

"Multi-residential applications outpaced single and semi-detached applications this quarter, highlighting the changing housing needs and preferences of Calgarians. While we still have a long way to go to meet the challenge of providing more affordable homes for everyone, we continue to make progress on providing more housing choices to support Calgarians at different stages in their lives,” says Dalgleish.

In April, five more downtown office-to-residential conversion projects received funding. The goal of these projects is to provide homes for more than 1,000 Calgarians, eliminate 500,000 square feet of unneeded office space and improve the vibrancy of our downtown.

With continued progress on residential construction, commercial development also remained strong this quarter. We received 1,686 non-residential building permit applications in the first six months of 2023, down from 1,805 received over the same period in 2022. While this marks a modest six per cent decrease year-over-year, Calgary saw a significant increase in non-residential construction value with $936 million reported in 2023, up 22 per cent from the $767 million reported for the same period last year.

"As we remain on track to reach our projected population of approximately 1.5 million people by 2028, strong investment in building our city is more important than ever,” says Dalgleish. “The City continues to work diligently, including with builders and developers, to streamline approval processes so that renters, homeowners and business owners can move in sooner.”

A round-up of our top 10 construction projects completed during the second quarter of 2023 include:

1.     Project Violin, a 1.2 million sq ft Amazon warehouse facility located in the East Shepard Industrial Park, valued at $131 million.

2.     Sofina Foods Inc, a new poultry facility in East Shepard Industrial Park, valued at $75 million.

3.     Minto Era Condominiums, a 13-storey, multi-residential building providing 186 units in the community of Crescent Heights, valued at $43 million.

4.     Riverwalk Senior Living, a 12-storey, 141-unit residential building in Cliff Bungalow, valued at $42.7 million.

5.     Aspen Woods Retirement Residence, a five-storey continuing care facility that will contain 182 units featuring independent Supportive Living, Assisted Living and Memory Care in the community of Aspen Woods, valued at $35.2 million.

6.     Prairie Sky School, a new, two-storey elementary/middle school in Skyview Ranch that can accommodate 900 students in grade K through nine, valued at $23.9 million.

7.     Credo Apartments, a six-storey, low-rise apartment building located in Bankview, providing 125 living units, valued at $18.1 million.

8.     West District Block 3, a five-storey, residential building located in West Springs, containing 78 units, valued at $17.9 million.

9.     Westview Residence West Building 3, a new mixed-use development by Silvera at Glamorgan, featuring five storeys and eighty-two units, valued at $16.9 million.

10.  Country Hills Chrysler, a two-storey, volume dealer of Dodge, RAM, Chrysler and Jeep located in Stonegate Landing, valued at $16 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.