Data Points

Building permit roundup in the Bay Area

(Photo by Anthony Ginsbrook via Unsplash

Over the last nine months, the number of housing permits issued in San Francisco County rose compared with the same period last year, while Alameda County issued the most permits during that time. 

While the nine-county Bay Area, as well as the state, are in the midst of a housing crisis, some other counties reported a drop in permits issued during the first nine months of 2019 compared with the same period a year ago, according to data* from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Although Alameda County issued the most permits this year, more than 4,500, the number dropped from over 7,000 issued through September 2018. Permits issued in Santa Clara County fell to about 4,000 in 2019 from 5,286 issued through September 2018.

Here’s how the counties rank by the number of building permits issued in 2019 through September. 

1
1. Alameda — 4,668
2
2. Santa Clara — 4,008
3
3. San Francisco — 2,663
4
4. Sonoma — 1,771
5
5. Contra Costa — 1,770
6
6. San Mateo — 711
7
7. Solano — 658
8
8. Marin — 152
9
9. Napa — 0*
1. Alameda — 4,668
2. Santa Clara — 4,008
3. San Francisco — 2,663
4. Sonoma — 1,771
5. Contra Costa — 1,770
6. San Mateo — 711
7. Solano — 658
8. Marin — 152
9. Napa — 0*

Developers decide whether to build based on current economic growth and projections for future growth, said Asim Khan, a senior economist for San Francisco County. 

“It’s also about the regulations,” which affects how hard it is to build in the future, he said.

* Not all jurisdictions in a county report monthly. Some report only yearly.

SourceU.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development