Building permits issued for February indicate that the city is on something of a rebound in residential construction, following a slight downturn in 1989, a city official said today.
The number of single-family residential permits issued so far is ahead of 1989's pace but still down somewhat from the 1988 record pace, Gene Shaughnessy, the city's chief building inspector, said today.
Meanwhile, there have still not been any permits issued this year for major business projects those totaling several million dollars.
However, Shaughnessy expects permits to be written this month for two major projects a $3.5 million Golf Course Superintendents Association of America headquarters and a new $4 million facility for Douglas County Bank.
SHAUGHNESSY said he also expects to see more permits written this month for tenant finishes in the new Lawrence Riverfront Plaza, which will have a grand opening April 28.
For the month of February, there were 129 permits issued, with a total valuation of $4.267 million. That brings the valuation total for the year to $6.762 million. That compares with 127 permits issued in February 1989, with a valuation of $4.592 million. The January and February total for 1989 was $6.160 million.
Permits were issued for 21 single-family homes in February, up from 16 in January, which brings the total to 37 for the year, Shaughnessy said.
In comparison, there were 15 single-family building permits issued during February 1989, and a total of 20 permits for single-family homes for the first two months of 1989. In February 1988, there were 33 permits issued for single-family homes.
SHAUGHNESSY said that because the single-family home permits are up in February, it appears the housing market is no longer saturated.
"That's a good number to start out with," he said. Permits were issued for a wide price range of houses, with the average valuation at just under $80,000, he said.
The largest business building permit issued for the month was for the Inter-State Inn, a new 48-room motel being built by Edmondson Construction and Robert Phillips, a local developer. The $900,000 project will be located at 1100 N. Third, just south of the East Lawrence Turnpike exit.
A permit also was written for a $30,000 project for an automatic teller machine for Capitol Federal Savings and Loan Assn., 1041 Vt.
"We're just starting out with a possibility of having a strong year in the construction industry," he said.