City Doing Well On Permits At FY Midpoint

Mount Marty University’s nearly-completed residence hall is among a number of substantial building projects permitted in the City of Yankton so far in 2020.

The City of Yankton is on pace to have another good year for permits, even if it may not exactly match last year’s totals.

Community & Economic Development Director Dave Mingo told the Press & Dakotan that its been a positive start to the year.

“Through the midpoint of the year, 2020 is looking very good,” Mingo said. “It looks like we’re going to be at or above our 10-year average as far as building permit valuations are concerned.”

He said that 2020 isn’t quite where the city was last year, but is still doing good overall.

“We had a really big permit pulled last year with the Mount Marty University (fieldhouse) project,” he said. “Permit values have been kind of strong across the board all sectors, and there’s a lot of commercial projects going on helping that value stay up.”

Through the end of June, the city has seen $14,286,579.50 in valuations, down from the $22,578,286 seen at the same point in 2019.

One thing that hasn’t been holding back permits is the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“There’s a lot of homeowners that are pulling permits for remodeling projects that they’re DIY-ing,” Mingo said. “From all the contractors that I’ve talked to, they appear to be booked out for a substantial amount of time through 2020 into next year even. Construction seems to be one of the parts of the economy — at least here in Yankton — that has stayed strong through all of this that we’re going through.”

Mingo said that there are still a number of substantial commercial projects that have been permitted in 2020, including the new Mount Marty University residence hall, a mechanical room project at Cimpl’s, the Horizon Health Clinic, Yankton Medical Clinic, Walmart and a new Dairy Queen location.

He said that most categories of building have looked strong this year.

“Commercial, across the board, is generally up,” he said. “Based on what we’re seeing in the plan sets being submitted right now, multi-family residential is going to be pretty strong in 2020. If we’re a little short in any one sector this year, it’s in single-family housing.”

Currently, 13 single-family housing permits have been issued with an expectation in the mid-20s to finish out the year.

“It’s down a little bit from where we’ve been the last couple of years,” he said. “It’s still not bad overall.”

As for the remainder of the year — while it may not be a record-setter — Mingo said he’s confident it will be a successful year for building permits.

“We’ll be on-par with our 10-year average and maybe slightly ahead,” he said. “A few of those multiple-family projects that are being proposed right now — if those permits get pulled in 2020, we’ll look pretty strong for housing units.”

However, after nearly five years of rapid housing unit growth in the city that has included the Wesbrook Estates project, he cautioned that this construction may slow down in the near future.

“I think at the end of 2020 into 2021, I think housing is probably going to plateau a little bit because we’ve got so many units that have been constructed since 2017,” he said. “I can’t imagine we’d hold that pace at the same level. I hope I’m wrong, but you never know.”

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