Construction and business growth trending upwards in Airdrie
By: Matt Durnan
| Posted: Thursday, Feb 27, 2014 10:48 am
Residential and commercial growth continued in Airdrie throughout 2013, as was shown by the City’s yearly construction value - $406 million - released on Feb. 24.
This figure is an increase of $41 million from 2012.
Residential construction accounted for the largest chunk, $316 million, while commercial and industrial accounted for $76 million. The remaining $14 million is accounted for under plumbing, electrical, HVAC and other permits.
A total of 1,772 residential construction permits were issued in 2013, an increase of 252 units over the previous year, bringing residential construction values to $316 million, up from $258 million in 2012.
“It was a strong year for construction growth in Airdrie,” said Pertti Harkonen, building inspections team leader for the City of Airdrie. “This year it was interesting to see multi-family residential permits exceed single-family home permits by 224. We’re seeing a continued diversification of the Airdrie housing market and that there are different types of consumers looking for homes.”
Commercial and industrial construction permit values increased significantly, totalling $76 million, up from $45.5 million in 2012. The total number of permits was 271, which included 17 new buildings.
Some major new developments in 2013 included: four apartment buildings totalling 299 units in Prairie Springs estimated at $21.3 million in construction value, Rogers Data Centre in Highland Park ($11.1 million), Hampton Inn and Suites in East Lake Industrial area ($10.8 million), a 13-bay warehouse in Highland Park ($10 million) and King’s Heights apartment buildings ($8.2 million).
“It was another great year for Airdrie business,” said Kent Rupert, economic development team leader. “There is a lot of confidence in the Airdrie market, evident in commercial and residential commitment to our city. Plus, there were some exciting new projects that began construction.”
Business license growth continued, with more than 3,180 businesses acquiring licenses in 2013. Business satisfaction in Airdrie is high according to the 2013 City of Airdrie Business Satisfaction Survey, with 89 per cent of businesses saying Airdrie is a “good,” “very good” or “excellent” place to do business.
“Our biggest growth is with Alberta-based companies looking to get into the Calgary market,” said Rupert.
“The Calgary area is starting to gain national recognition as a transportation and logistics hub so we’re seeing a lot of those types of companies looking to set up here.”
Airdrie was voted the seventh best place in Alberta to do business by Alberta Venture Magazine in November, 2013, based on criteria such as population growth, mill rate (tax rate), median age and cost of serviced industrial land.
“Airdrie has a good reputation as a young, dynamic city and I can absolutely see this growth trend continuing,” said Rupert.
“We’ve become a real focus for developers and builders and council has put it out there that we are open for business.”