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  • Writer's pictureCity of Merced

Record Building Permit Applications

Updated: May 13, 2020

News Release


Senior Management Analyst

(209) 385-6232 Direct

Record set for building permit applications

The City reached 4,012 building permit applications Thursday, exceeding the previous record of 3,663 for the entire year of 2005.

Since January, the City has issued 602 single family dwelling (SFD) permits.

“This is a huge milestone that shows we have a dynamic economy throughout the City,” said City Manager Steve Carrigan. “Building activity plays an important role in our local economy.”

“It’s an all-time high for City growth and improvements,” said Denise Frazier, the City’s Chief Building/Construction Project Official. “The permits being pulled are across the board. It’s not just with single family dwellings, people are putting on new roofs, HVACs (heating, ventilation, air conditioning), tenant improvements and new commercial buildings.”

She said the building is going on all over the City.

Frazier said housing is leading the way, in part because of changes in the building code and also in what developers are offering. The building code now requires sprinklers in new homes, and developers are including solar units with most new homes, even though it isn’t required yet. Both of those need additional permits.

“Single family dwelling permits and total permits only tell part of the story,” said Scott McBride, the City’s Director of Development Services. “We have numerous large commercial projects, both renovations and new construction, light industrial, as well as multi-family projects that are underway.

The construction activity has shown up in the City’s retail and industrial centers. The former Sears Center and Orchard Supply have been undergoing renovations, while five companies are adding more than 120,000 square-feet of industrial and commercial space, said Frank Quintero, the Director of Economic Development. He said more companies have expansion plans in the works.

“People see the houses going up, but they don’t realize the industrial activity that we have going on,” he said. “Those expansions lead to construction jobs, but also permanent jobs once the hammers stop.”

Quintero said retailers like Dutch Brothers Coffee and Rally’s/Checkers Burgers also add to the increase in construction.

More applications are anticipated over the next month as the 2016 Building Codes expire at the end of the year, McBride said. Builders can get ahead of the change to the 2019 Code update by submitting plans before Dec. 31.


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