New housing construction in Northwest BC declined by 41% last year: CPABC

Joshua Azizi


A report from the Chartered Professional Accountant of BC (CPABC) is raising concerns about a 41 per cent decline in the number of housing units in Northwest BC's two largest cities that began construction last year. 

In a news release, the group says that the total number of units that began construction in the region – which are known as "housing starts" – dropped from 71 in 2019 to 42 in 2020.

New housing starts in Terrace dropped from 51 to 34, and in Prince Rupert they fell from 20 to eight.

Zero attached units such as apartments, townhouses or condos also began construction last year – a decline from 20 in 2019 and 135 in 2018.

In their news release, the CPA says that the combination of low housing starts and a high demand for housing will create housing affordability challenges for the region's municipalities. 

However, they also predict that the arrival of large-scare industrial projects such as LNG Canada will attract housing development and expand economic activity.

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