According to Statistics Canada, total investment in building construction increased 12.0 percent to $14.9 billion in June, following the 62.2 percent gain observed in May. Although COVID-19-related workplace guidelines remained in place for June, construction sites were largely back to normal activity, which contributed to gains in all components of residential and non-residential investment. Despite June’s growth, investment in building construction remained 3.1 percent lower than February 2020, before COVID-19-related restrictions were first put in place. On a constant dollar basis (2012=100), investment in building construction increased 11.7 percent to $12.1 billion in June.
Investment in residential construction rose 12.2 percent to $9.4 billion in June, with gains in both single-unit (+13.0 percent to $4.7 billion) and multi-unit (+11.4 percent to $4.7 billion) investment. Ontario and Quebec led all provinces in growth for the month, while Saskatchewan was the only province to report a decline. Nationally, after back-to-back months of strong gains, residential investment still remained 8.6 percent lower than February 2020 levels.
Non-residential construction investment increased 11.6 percent to $5.5 billion in June. Strong gains in Ontario and Quebec led to national growth in all components of non-residential investment, outweighing declines reported in all other provinces for the month.
With the strong increase in non-residential construction in June, investment for all three components is now somewhat higher than the levels recorded before COVID-19 restrictions were put in place.
The commercial component represented the majority of non-residential construction gains, up 14.7 percent to $3.3 billion, with notable increases in Ontario and Quebec. Alberta (-4.2 percent to $384.5 million) and British Columbia (-3.2 percent to $458.3 million) reported the largest declines for the month.
The industrial (+7.7 percent) and institutional (+6.6 percent) sectors also increased in June, supported by strong gains in Ontario and Quebec.