Canadian cities issued building permits worth $7 billion in April, a 10.5 per cent increase from the previous month, according to new data from Statistics Canada. The April gain marked the fourth monthly gain in a row, the longest streak of increases in 10 years.
Nationwide, residential permits rose 21 per cent to $4.4 billion in April, the second straight monthly increase and the highest level in the last 10 months.
Permits for multi-family housing projects like apartments and condos jumped 51.9 per cent in April to $2.1 billion. Meanwhile, single-family permits rose 1.1 per cent to $2.2 billion.
Canadian cities approved permits for the construction of 19,377 new homes, up 33 per cent from March. Most of these were of the multi-family variety, which rose 58.3 per cent to 13,168 units. The number of single-family dwellings, however, fell 0.6 per cent from the previous month to 6,209 units.
Overall construction intentions were up in 27 of the 34 cities included in the census, led by Calgary and Vancouver.
The gains in Calgary were driven by an increase in commercial building permits while the jump in Vancouver came mainly from multi-family projects.
Permits for non-residential construction fell 3.6 per cent to $2.6 billion from March to April. Monthly declines were recorded in five provinces, with Alberta and Ontario posting the largest decreases. New Brunswick registered the largest increase, followed by Quebec and British Columbia.