The latest report on residential construction permits issued in Connecticut is encouraging after last year’s slowest in decades building activity.
For the first three months of the year, permits issued for single-family houses, condominiums and apartment units are up 76 percent, compared to the same period last year. True, the 777 housing units are still far below the 1,954 issued in the first three months of 2006, the year before the housing recession hit, but it may be the start of a recovery, albeit a modest one.
Most of the building, however, is concentrated in the construction of apartment buildings. And a closer look at the statistics issued by the state Department of Economic and Community Development show that a third of the units in the first three months of this year — 264 — were in just one apartment project in Shelton.
Without the Shelton development, the increase is closer to 16 percent and far from a broad-based recovery.
Residential housing permit data is collected monthly by the U.S. Census from 128 towns and cities in the state. Once a year, a survey of all 169 municipalities is conducted. The annual survey for 2011 is due out in May.
Experts do expect apartment construction to outpace single-family home building in the next few years, as vacancy has fallen to historic lows, particularly in Greater Hartford.
Read my story on apartment construction in the Hartford area here.
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