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As of the end of November, the City of Dawson Creek issued 214 new business licences this year, including to 15 new oilfield-related businesses. The total number of business licences issued, which includes annual renewals, has been rising steadily from the 1,001 that were issued in 2006 to the 1,205 that were issued last year, and while this year’s total has yet to be finalized, it has likely risen again, said Kevin Henderson, director of infrastructure and sustainable development for the City.

“The trend is that it has been going up, and with how much activity we have here, I would daresay it has probably increased again,” he said.

Those new licences generated just over $26,000 in revenue, which Henderson said helps cover the cost of administrative functions such as building inspections.

The City issued nine building permits in November for work valued at nearly $4.8 million. Henderson said that figure was really boosted by a couple of big projects – an addition to the Pomeroy Hotel, and a new truck shop being built at 2605 95 Avenue. Those permits generated just over $31,000 in revenue, which he said again goes into covering the cost of administrative functions for his department.

As of November, the total value of construction related to the 131 building permits issued was over $49 million, which is not quite the record of over $58 million set last year, but still quite impressive, said Henderson.

“We’re probably going to break $50 million (this year), which will be our second-highest year, or very close to it,” he said. “It’s been coming up every year, and it just speaks to how busy it is around town and what’s going on with the economy.”

There were also 88 new dwelling units built in the city this year as of the end of November, including 37 single-family homes, 20 duplexes (two dwelling units each), one tri-plex and one four-plex (three and four units each, respectively), and four secondary suites. Henderson said he is not sure how that compares to the demand for new housing in the city, but he said it does indicate a trend towards more affordable, multi-family rental housing.

“I would say this is the first I’ve seen where we’ve had more duplexes than single-family dwellings, so it has definitely been a shift and a response to the need that’s out there,” he said.

He added given the revenue opportunities available to homeowners now that secondary suites are legal dwellings following a bylaw change by council last year, he expects to see more of those units being built next year.

He also noted there were only seven official community plan (OCP)/zoning amendments required so far this year, compared to 21 last year, which he said indicates the changes made last year to the OCP have helped to identify more appropriate zones for the different types of developments being proposed in the city.

  

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