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Residential Construction Permits Reach Highest Level In A Decade

Rendering of 29-26 Northern Blvd. in Long Island City from Simon Baron Development

Although the rental market in New York is heading in a concerning direction, construction is not slowing down.

The New York City Department of Buildings issued permits for the construction of 6,343 residential units in the first quarter of 2017, more than it has in one quarter since 2007. It is also more than triple the number of permits issued in the first quarter of 2016,  but better than the mad building dash of 2015, according to a study by the New York Building Congress.

2015 finished so strongly because developers were rushing to get projects in before the 421-a tax abatement program, while 2016's precipitous drop in permitting can be seen as simply a small break, rather than the start of a multi-year trend, especially now that the financial benefits of 421-a have been revived in the Affordable New York program.

After leading all boroughs in permits granted for six straight years, Brooklyn once again saw the most activity in the first quarter of 2017 with 2,097 units permitted, or 33% of total activity. Queens and the Bronx are closing the gap, with the boroughs seeing 1,434 and 1,124 permits approved, respectively. Manhattan remained in second place with 1,486 units approved.