Williams Lake presently has $35 million worth of building permits.
“We’ve had 84 permits issued for 2018,” said Gary Muraca, the city’s director of municipal services.
The major projects are the Tolko rebuild, Shoppers/Tim Hortons Complex, Starbucks, First Avenue 40-unit affordable housing complex, West Fraser mill addition and Platform Properties.
The $35 million is higher than previous years, including 2017 when the total building permit value was $20.6 million.
Muraca, however, said some of the 2018 permits may be from carrying forward from the shortened building season in 2017 due to the wildfires.
Mayor Walt Cobb said while he’s excited about all the development that is underway, he is also concerned because there is a shortage of available housing in Williams Lake.
“Our vacancy rate is less than four per cent so that’s classified as zero basically. We’ve got to find somebody to come in and build some apartments or condos, houses or something,” Cobb said.
Presently the City has a level three building inspector, Gary Deane, Muraca said.
Level three is the highest level, and Deane is competent in plumbing and solid fuel appliances and has recently began a training opportunity with an internal staff member for succession planning.
“We complete the inspections in town and have a shared service agreement with the Cariboo Regional District to cover holidays, etc.,” Muraca said, noting the City’s building department promotes safety of all building and structures within the city through administration and enforcement of codes and ordinances regarding new construction, renovations and signage.