Big year for local housing starts in 2020, despite pandemic

High-rise construction site 275 North Front Street Feb. 2021 ( photo)

Construction of a new apartment building in downtown Sarnia contributed to a big year for housing starts locally.

Canada Mortgage and Housing (CMHC) Senior Analyst Anthony Passarelli said work started on 280 units in 2020, the highest since 2009.

The numbers include Tricar’s 120-unit, 15-storey apartment building under construction on Front Street, and 160 single-detached family homes.

“It was a continuation of what happened in the last few years,” said Passarelli. “It seems like, based on even what happened in January this year, in most markets there seems to be a trend toward a greater number of single-detached starts this year. Given the market dynamics we have a lot of people that are demanding single-detached homes and the supply is very low.”

The housing start numbers include Sarnia, St. Clair Township and Point Edward.