Originally Posted by LtBk
Stupid question, but what's the best way to find out the amount of residential units being built in a city?
Depends. Every city counts things their own way. I'm not aware of a central authority like the Census Dept. having numbers, though they do count occupied units, etc., imperfectly of course.
Land use permits are too removed from actual construction to mean much. Building permits are less removed but are still somewhat. And each city has its own processes, particularly on the land use side.
Many cities have reports from their building department that summarize things in whatever way. If you're lucky they'll summarize numbers about habitable units constructed, rather than land use or building permits. These reports are probably historical....break ground in July 2012 and it'll show up in the 2014 retrospective in 2015.
Seattle has a retrospective like that...permits "finaled," per year by neighborhood per year, minus units subtracted. It was just updated this month (score!). Summarizing, from 1995-2004 we added a net 24,377 units, or 2,437 per year. From 2005-2012 we added 27,978. Of that, the 2011 and 2012 numbers are only lightly populated because not many completed in 2011, and 2012 counts six month. It was 24,647 2005-2010, or 4,107 per year. The 2012 and 2013 numbers will be above that as something like 8,000 are underway now. It's a fascinating report...summarizing each year down to neighborhoods. Another 13,170 are permitted, which I assume means building permit. http://www.seattle.gov/dpd/cms/group...dpdp022071.pdf