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Investment in non-residential building construction, March 2022. (Source: Statistics Canada, table 34-10-0175-01)

Statistics Canada reports that investment in building construction rose month over month in March, rising 1.8% from February to $20.3 billion. Gains were reported in the residential and non-residential sectors.

Non-residential investment continues to show strength, rising 2% from February’s results, a ninth consecutive monthly increase.

Commercial investment rose 2.4% to $2.9 billion. All provinces posted growth, led by Quebec, as commercial development in Mount Royal was the main contributor to the increase in this component.

Investment in industrial construction rose 1.9% to $910 million, with Ontario and Quebec leading the gains.

Institutional investment rose 1.1% to $1.4 billion, a third consecutive month of growth. Much of this increase reflects the early stages of a hospital project in Quebec.

On the residential side, construction investment rose for a sixth straight month, jumping 1.7% to $15.1 billion. Ontario contributed about three-quarters of the monthly increase, bringing the national total just below the record high reached in April 2021.

Investment in single-family homes rose 4.3% to $8.4 billion, while investment in multi-unit construction fell 1.4% to $6.7 billion, ending five consecutive months of growth for the component.

The total value of investment in building construction rose 9.2% to $59.7 billion in the first quarter of 2022. Almost all of the quarter’s gains were in the residential sector, which jumped 11% to $44.4 billion. The non-residential sector saw a more modest increase of 4.3%, reaching $15.3 billion, although all non-residential sub-components increased during the quarter.

The commercial component, which contributed the most to the non-residential sector, rose 5.1% to $8.5 billion; the industrial component rose 6.1% to $2.7 billion; and the institutional component increased 1.5% to $4.1 billion.