Fort Smith area building activity surges in November, up over 78%

by Aric Mitchell (aric.mitchell@gmail.com) 485 views 

Building activity in the Fort Smith region bounced back in a major way in November, cutting its year-to-date deficit by more than 5% after a rough September placed it into the red.

The region — permits for Fort Smith, Van Buren, and Greenwood — began November 5.81% behind 2016 figures. But increases in all three markets pushed it to $194.288 million in valuations for the first 11 months, just 0.26% removed from 2016’s YTD tally of $194.789 million.

Over the last 30 days, the region posted $22.902 million in permits, an increase of 78.5% from November 2016’s $12.83 million. Fort Smith accounted for $20.148 million of the month’s values on 153 permits, a 79.94% increase from November 2016’s $11.197 million.

Just under $10 million of that was on the residential side, while commercial permits comprised $12.372 million of the whole. Major permits included a $4.5 million new construction item at New Life Church, 1900 North 62nd Street; a $1.7 million alteration at Mars Petcare, 10000 Roberts Boulevard; a $1.6 million build for The Shoppes at Lee Avenue; and a $1.247 million addition at Sparks, 1506 Dodson Avenue.

CITY PERFORMANCE BREAKDOWN
Through the first 11 months of the year, the metro’s largest city trailed the previous year with $161.47 million against $170.074 million — a decline of 5.06%. While numbers remain soft, the city finished September down 13.46%, so with November’s performance, it has taken off 8.4% from the short in just two months.

Performing better than the previous year were the cities of Greenwood and Van Buren. Greenwood reported $359,000 in valuations against last November’s $354,840 — an increase of approximately 1.17% — with the full amount coming from residential construction.

Van Buren surged 87.26% with $2.395 million in valuations against November 2016’s $1.279 million tally. Over $1.4 million of the total was for a car wash facility at 1830 N. 6th St. ($780,000) and a gourmet popcorn shop at 830 Main Street ($684,000). For the year, both cities are up with Greenwood improving 49.1% to $14.433 million against $9.68 million and Van Buren besting its previous performance by 22.28% with $18.385 million against $15.035 million the previous year.

REGIONAL BUILDING ACTIVITY RECAP
Combined total for the three cities
2016: $213.734 million (With 91.67% of the year complete, the 2017 YTD is at 91% of the 2016 total)
2015: $218.899 million
2014: $198.983 million
2013: $202.389 million
2012: $154.64 million
2011: $201.079 million
2010: $149 million
2009: $164 million

Fort Smith
2016: $187.675 million (With 91.67% of the year complete, the 2017 YTD is at 86% of the 2016 total)
2015: $191.631 million
2014: $174.252 million
2013: $185.057 million
2012: $136.248 million

Van Buren
2016: $15.328 million (With 91.67% of the year complete, the 2017 YTD is at 120% of the 2016 total)
2015: $16.009 million
2014: $7.918 million
2013: $8.283 million
2012: $8.609 million

Greenwood
2016: $10.731 million (With 91.67% of the year complete, the 2017 YTD is at 134.5% of the 2016 total)
2015: $11.259 million
2014: $16.813 million
2013: $9.049 million
2012: $9.983 million

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