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For additional information relating to this article, please contact:

Alexander Chute Economist
Tel: 902-424-5810Email:

December 08, 2017

Statistics Canada has revsied non-residentail building construction data for 2014 through 2017 Q3. The level of activity was revised higher for all provinces for this period, Nova Scotia non-residetnail building construction estimates are on average 4.6 per cent larger than the previous estimates. The following article has been updated to reflect the most recent data.

Nova Scotia's non-residential building construction investment (seasonally adjusted) was $154.1 million in the third quarter of 2017. This was 4.5 per cent higher than the previous quarter owing to increases in commercial (+5.8%) and institutional and government (+13.1%) offsetting a decline in industrial (-7.4%).

Compared to the same quarter last year (Q3 2016), non-residential building construction increased 2.0 per cent. Activity was lower in the largest subsector commercial (-8.0%) while industrial (+19.4%) and institutional and government (+33.4%) increased.


Halifax non-residential building construction was up 16.3 per cent compared to the previous quarter due to growth in commercial and institutional and governmental buildings. Outside of Halifax, non-residential building construction decreased 8.4 per cent in the quarter, with decreases in all three subsectors

Over the first three quarters of 2017 compared to the same period in 2016, non-residential building construction is down 13.4 per cent or $68.1 million in Nova Scotia. A decline in commercial building construction (-23.4%) offset an increase in industrial (+9.8%) and government (+17.5%). The decline in commercial building construction occurred in the Halifax region with a decline of 23.0 per cent. Non-residential building construction is up 0.8 per cent outside of Halifax.


In Canada, non-residential building construction increased in the second quarter of 2017 (+3.4%). Investments in industrial projects were up 5.4 per cent with higher investment in manufacturing facilities and farm buildings. Commercial buildings were up 2.4 per cent led by office buildings in Ontario and Quebec. Institutional building investment increased by 4.4 per cent with higher spending on educational buildings.

Compared to the third quarter of 2016, Canadian non-residential building construction was up 1.7 per cent, with increases in industrial (+4.2%), commercial (+2.4%) and institutional and governmental (+4.4%).



In the third quarter 2017, non-residential building construction was down in three provinces. Newfoundland and Labrador posted the largest percentage increase at 14.6 per cent while the largest decline was seen in Manitoba.

Comparing the third quarter of 2017 to the third quarter in 2016, non-residential building construction was down in four provinces with the largest decline in Saskatchewan (-16.1%). New Brunswick increased 17.9 per cent and Prince Edward Island and Quebec were up 9.9 per cent.


On a year-to-date basis, non-residential building construction has decreased 1.1 per cent in Canada with gains in five provinces and declines in five provinces. The largest percentage increase was in New Brunswick (+28.2%) while the largest decline in Newfoundland and Labrador (-29.6%). Ontario and Quebec have posted increases of 0.8 per cent and 3.6 per cent, respectively. Non-residential building construction was lower in Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Columbia.


 Statistics Canada CANSIM 026-0016

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