Steven MacDonald, Community and Economic Development Director, 509.625.6835
Monday, February 5, 2024 at 2:10 p.m.
Updated February 7, 2024
The year 2023 is worth celebrating in Spokane as the number of total permits processed, combined with 2021 and 2022, set all-time records for a three-year stretch.
During the past three years, 35,769 total permits were processed by the City in 2023, 36,882 in 2022 and 34,850 in 2021.
Looking at 2023 individually, there were also four residential building records at the City that were broken that continue help address the need for more housing.
Those records include:
The City’s current permit data dates back to 1995.
The BOCA Factor
The Building Opportunity and Choices for All interim ordinance, which created opportunity for immediate Middle Housing development while the City worked on making permanent Comprehensive Plan and Development Code changes, helped the City reach its second-highest number of duplexes at 37, adding 74 residential units.
Gov. Jay Inslee presented the City the Governor’s Smart Communities Award for the Smart Housing Strategies Category during a ceremony in January 2024 for BOCA. The award category recognizes creative plans, policies, programs and/or actions.
The records were established despite a slightly lower number of single-family housing starts for the year. There were 237 single-family residential permits issued in 2023 compared to 267 in 2022.
Other noteworthy numbers underscore how busy the City’s Development Services Center was last year.
A total of 22,548 permits (excludes Planning, Engineering and Code Enforcement actions) were processed, including 5,063 construction permits. Both figures rank as the third-highest numbers ever. The construction value of those total permits was nearly $521 million, the fifth-highest mark.
Other DSC highlights included:
Looking Ahead in 2024
Based on the projects in the City’s Plan Review process and pre-development activity, construction valuations should surpass $500 million for only the sixth time ever and multi-family construction should continue to shine.
Major projects submitted to the City for Plan Review are:
Increases to General Facilities Charges, a one-time connection fee paid by property owners seeking to connect to the utility system, and the statewide adoption of new Building and Energy Codes could lead to a rush of permit activity in advance of the anticipated March 2024 implementation.