The RM of Estevan enjoyed a slight increase in building permit values in 2013, but also had a decrease in the overall number of permits, according to figures that were released on January 10.
There were 53 permits with a total value of more than $35.8 million last year, compared with 63 permits with a total value of $32.7 million in 2012.
The numbers for 2013 included 26 permits for new single family residential dwellings, or additions to existing dwellings, with a total value of $8.616 million; 11 permits for residential accessory buildings – such as storage shops, barns and sheds – for more than $1.1 million; and 16 permits for commercial and industrial projects that were worth $26.1 million.
The RM also issued six development permits for farm buildings in 2013, all of which were post frame buildings.
Reeve Kelly Lafrentz cited continued interest in southeast Saskatchewan for the ongoing growth. He expects that the RM will remain busy into the future.
“People have some confidence in it, and they're still proceeding with plans for development in the area,” said Lafrentz.
He said he was surprised that the overall value of the building permits was up, since he knew that the number of permits was down, but there were some lucrative projects completed in 2013. Among them was the PTI Group's Boundary Lodge for $10.5 million in the northeast corner of the RM.
“But 53 is still outstanding, when you look back … 10 ago, when we were probably sitting at half a dozen or 10 permits for the year,” said Lafrentz.
The RM has also been working on a new community plan and updated zoning bylaws, which could be finalized and approved this winter. But Lafrentz said that the community plan probably won't enhance the RM's growth efforts; rather, it will better identify areas where they want growth to occur.