Palmerston North breaks new records for building consents
Building consents with a total value of $42m were approved by Council in March. This is the highest monthly total recorded since statistics began in April 1990.
Mayor Grant Smith welcomed the latest data saying the value and number of consents indicates investment confidence and economic growth for the city.
“We expect the records to be broken again in the near future. There’s a large retirement village consent currently being processed which will increase the annual total when it is approved,” says Mayor Smith.
Eight consents approved in March had value of $1m or more. The largest consent was for the Toyota parts distribution warehouse extension. There is also a range of other commercial projects underway in the city.
Total value of consents approved in the March quarter was $95m, an increase of 139 percent from the March 2017 quarter. On a 12 month basis the $244m value is also a new record with a 40 percent increase.
Peter Eathorne, General Manager - Customer Services says due to the increase in volume, the consents team is under pressure to keep up with the demand. “We are addressing this in a number of ways.”
“The new online building consents system implemented in mid-2017 was very timely, allowing us to make use of contractors throughout New Zealand to assist with processing applications. We have also established a client engagement service that provides a single point of contact and dedicated team of staff for a specific application. This enables developers to obtain their consents in a timely manner.
“We have ongoing challenges with recruiting skilled and experienced staff, so we are working with UCOL to provide career opportunities for their students undertaking construction related Diploma courses. We are also focused on increased training of our staff to enhance their skills to meet the increasing demands from the booming construction sector.”