Tampa issued nearly $400 million more in permits for construction services this year than in fiscal year 2014. The city’s Construction Services Office exceeded $2.4 billion in permits in 2015, up from just $2 billion last year.
“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, this City has its swagger back and I could not be more excited about these numbers,” Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn said. “Not only did Construction Services increase their permitting value by nearly $400,000,000 but they did so with a lean and mean staff. I can’t wait to see what 2016 brings.”
The increase represents continued economic growth in post-recession Tampa.
In all, there were 23,161 permits. Nearly 17,000 were residential permits and more than 6,300 were commercial permits.
Though permitting values exceeded those in 2014, the city actually had fewer permits issued this year than last. Nearly 35,000 permits were issued in 2014. However, that does not mean there were fewer projects permitted. Tampa revamped its permitting process to eliminate duplicative permits.
The continued growth is a testament to Buckhorn’s pro-business policies. In 2011 at the beginning of his tenure as mayor he convened local developers, neighborhood representatives, engineers and attorneys to create an Economic Competitiveness Report. Included in that report were highlights of Tampa’s strengths and weaknesses. The report served as a benchmark for achieving better growth and development.
Following that report, Buckhorn established a “One Stop Permitting Shop” to expedite the process. The shop merges all permitting and regulatory staff into one location to eliminate the need for multiple trips to separate offices.