Broad based rise in non-residential building consents pushes the focus to the construction industry's capacity to deliver all this new work

Park Hyatt Auckland hotel project

Statistics NZ is reporting a surge of building consents for projects that do not involve residential dwellings.

These consents reached $837 million in March, a new record high. The previous high was $739 mln in June 2016. The March 2017 level was an impressive +122% rise on the same month a year ago.

The main contributing building types were:

– offices, administration, and public transport buildings – $191 mln (up $92 mln from March 2016)

– hotels, motels, and other short-term accommodation – $167 mln (up $141 mln)

– hospital, nursing homes, and other health buildings – $104 mln (up $68 mln)

– shops, restaurants, and bars – $102 mln (up $61 mln)

The broad based nature of these rises is impressive.

But given that the total value of residential building consents was also at a record high, it does raise the question of whether there are enough resources to deliver all these projects.

Of note however, the rise in consents for ‘hotels’ is really only one Auckland project. The five star Viaduct basin Park Hyatt Hotel received its construction consent in the value of $132.8 mln in the month. That means that nationally, there were only $34 mln of consents for other tourist accommodation projects granted. That industry’s accommodation issues were barely assisted in these March numbers.