March permit numbers continue upward trend

Officials in Bonney Lake are optimistic as recently released building permit numbers and the valuation totals for new projects are the highest since July 2008, besting even February’s totals.

According to Community Development Director John Vodopich, the city collected $71,426 in permit fees for a total valuation of $4,344,927.

In February, the city collected about $77,000 in fees for a total valuation of $4,081,757.

Prior to February, the city hadn’t seen permits with valuations totaling $4 million since July of 2008 when it collected $5.78 million.

“It’s certainly very encouraging,” Vodopich said Wednesday.

Vodopich said the majority of permits came in the form of two large residential housing developments, which indicate a potential change in the market.

Though he said it was too early to think in terms of a total turnaround, he again called the numbers “extremely encouraging” and said if this trend continues, it could indicate the city coming out the recession.

Because of lowered expectation based on 2009 totals, the new numbers also mean that in the first three months of this year, the city has already collected about 55 percent of its budgeted revenue for the year.

Vodopich also said there are several large projects still in the pipeline that have not yet come in for permits, such as the new medical building slated for the former WSU demonstration forest.

Vodopich also said that the permit season is really just getting started as developers and builders plan for summer.

“People are getting their permits in order to build in the warmer months,” he said.