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Jump in building permit numbers heralds summer construction season

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Building-permit activity in Manitoba jumped by 28.2 per cent in April as local builders began gearing up for the traditionally busy summer construction season.

Statistics Canada data released today shows $185.8 million worth of residential and non-residential building permits were issued by Manitoba municipalities during the month. That compares with $145 million in March.

April’s total was also an 8.7 per cent improvement from a year earlier, when $170.9 million worth of permits were issued.

The biggest percentage gain was in the non-residential sector, where permit values soared by 60.9 per cent to $68.7 million from $42.7 million in March. The residential sector saw a respectable 14.5 per cent increase — $117.1 million versus $102.3 million.

Statistics Canada said Manitoba was one of six provinces to post an increase in permit values. Manitoba’s percentage increase was the fourth highest among the six. Nova Scotia led the way with a 42.2 per cent gain, while Quebec had the biggest increase in dollar terms.

Canada saw its permit values rise by 1.1 per cent to $6.0 billion after two consecutive monthly declines. Statistics Canada said the increase was due to higher construction intentions in the residential sector, which more than offset the decline on the non-residential side of the industry.

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