Fort Smith metro building permits top $400 million through October

by Tina Alvey Dale ([email protected]) 1,598 views 

Residential construction work at Chaffee Crossing in east Fort Smith.

Folks continue to hammer in the Fort Smith metro. Greenwood, Van Buren and Fort Smith building permits totaled $413.469 million through the first 10 months of the year, up 44.7% compared with the same period in 2021.

The three cities had $60.865 million in recorded permit values in October, up 65% from the $36.881 million reported in September and up 58.2% from the $38.48 million reported in October 2021.

Fort Smith issued 407 permits in October with a value of $53.739 million, up 338% from the $12.268 million value of 395 permits issued in September and up 81.1% from the $29.67 million value of 168 permits issued in October 2021. Year-to-date, the city has issued $313.819 million in building permits, up 28.45% from the 244.31 million issued in the first 10 months of 2021.

There were 28 permits issued for new residential construction in October with a value of $5.286 million, up 627% from the $705,000 value of five new residential construction permits issued in September and up 15.2% from the $4.59 million on 18 new residential construction permits in October 2021.

There were six permits issued for new commercial construction in October with a value of $23.482 million. That is a big jump from the $2.704 million with two new commercial construction permits in October 2021. There were no permits for new construction in September.

Included in the new commercial is a new $2.5 million daycare at 9040 Massard Road by Shire, Inc., and a $20-million skilled nursing facility at 9000 U.S. 71 South by Fort Smith-based Central Arkansas Nursing Centers. The 91,741 skilled nursing facility will have 140 beds and will be mostly private rooms. It is expected to be completed in 18 to 19 months.

VAN BUREN, GREENWOOD GAINS
Van Buren, the region’s second largest city, issued 115 permits in October with a value of $5.491 million. This was a 74.4% decrease from the $21.458 million value of 112 permits issued in September and a 26.2% decrease from the $7.44 million value of 62 permits issued in October 2021.

The city issued $705,000 in residential construction permits in the month, down $35.5% from the $1.093 million issued in September and down 39% from the $1.162 million in residential construction issued in October 2021.

There were three commercial construction permits with a value of $4.529 million issued in October, down 77.5% from the $20.15 million value of commercial construction permits issued in September and down 5% from the $6.277 million in commercial construction permits issued in October 2021. Among the permits issued was a $1.5 million permit for construction of a Dairy Queen at 2811 Alma Highway in Van Buren, and a $3 million remodel project of the former U.S. Bank at 510 Webster into a new First Star Bank.

Through the first 10 months of this year, Van Buren has $86.39 million in permitted activity, a 173.8% increase from the $31.55 million reported through October 2021.

Greenwood issued 10 permits in October with a combined value of $1.635 million, down 48.2% from the $3.155 million value of 27 permits issued in September, but a 19.1% increase from the $1.373 value of 13 permits issued in October 2021. The city’s big project for the month is a $950,000 remodel of the interior of the office at Alpha Packaging Inc. at 2020 E. Center Street. Last month the city issued a permit for a $2.2 million warehouse for the company at the same location.

Greenwood’s year-to-date total of $13.263 million is 35.06% higher than the $9.82 million in permit values issued in the first 10 months of 2021.

The Fort Smith region ended 2021 with $343.289 million in permitted building activity, up 29% over the $265.975 million in 2020. The Fort Smith metro has seen continuous growth over the  past several years, but no recent year has performed as well in building activity as 2021 with all three of the larger cities in the region seeing an increase in building numbers from 2020.

REGIONAL BUILDING ACTIVITY RECAP
Combined total for the three cities
2021: $343.289 million
2020: $265.975 million
2019: $241.741 million
2018: $231.78 million
2017: $210.844 million
2016: $211.345 million
2015: $218.899 million
2014: $198.983 million
2013: $202.389 million
2012: $154.64 million
2011: $201.079 million