Statewide, the value of issued permits rose by 5 percent—decimal dust in the volatile world of construction permitting. However, the true story in this data is the revival of residential construction permitting. The number of new dwelling unit permits issued in Utah totaled more than 11,200—a 28-percent increase from the previous year. The value of those permits increased by almost 30 percent. In addition, the value of residential additions/alterations/repair permits expanded by a healthy 33 percent.
On the other hand, new nonresidential permit values declined by 15 percent. Keep in mind that public construction projects are typically not permitted and that nonresidential building typically lags behind a surge in residential construction.
How did Utah’s various counties perform in light of the statewide gains? Let’s take a look.
- In 2012, Uintah County, with its booming oil/gas driven employment gains, more than doubled the number of home permits it issued in 2011.
- Other counties with rapidly expanding home permits included Davis (up 50 percent), Iron (up 45 percent), Cache (up 34 percent), Duchesne (up 33 percent) and Utah (up32 percent).
- Most counties in the Wasatch Front, eastern and southwestern areas of the state saw home building permits increases
- Nevertheless, almost half of Utah’s failed to join in the home-building joy. These counties are typically rural with the central part of the state showing the largest continued permit losses.
- Fewer counties showed gains in new nonresidential building. Those with gains were almost entirely located along the eastern side of the state.
- Grand (up 292 percent), Emery (up 195 percent), Summit (up 157 percent), and Wasatch (up 87 percent) showed some of the strongest nonresidential permitting gains during 2012.