OKC Multifamily Permits Increase in `97 Third Quarter

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Multifamily permits more than doubled in Oklahoma City in the third quarter of 1997 from the year before, to 1,572 units, according to a M/PF Research's U.S. Apartment Market Report.

The city ranked 40th among 56 major metros in construction activity during the period.

Oklahoma City's apartment occupancy dropped to 93.1 percent in the third quarter, down 1.4 percent from the year before. The decline may have resulted from a small growth in new supply and apartment residents moving to single-family homes. Rental rates averaged $455, or 60.1 cents per square foot -- the second most affordable apartment market on a monthly basis nationally. Oklahoma City followed Tulsa, which posted an average rent of $450. Oklahoma City rents climbed 1.1 percent in the past year. The study tracked 22 apartment communities with 5,488 units in Oklahoma City and 31 apartment communities with 7,580 units in Tulsa. Dodge report Construction of manufacturing plants surged in 10 central Oklahoma counties through the first 11 months of 1997, according to the Dodge Local Construction Potentials Bulletin for November. The 47 manufacturing plant projects under way this year more than doubled from 20 for the same period in 1996. Their total estimated value of $15.2 million rose 22 percent from last year's value of $12.46 million. The estimated value for all commercial construction rose 8 percent, with 324 projects valued at $148 million compared to 266 valued at $137.2 million for the same period of 1996. Overall, however, total construction is down for the metro area through November, with 5,250 projects valued at $1.1 billion this year, down from 5,604 projects valued at $1.2 billion for the first 11 months of 1996. Statewide totals also are down, with this year's 13,215 projects valued at $2.69 billion falling short of 1996's 14,170 projects valued at $2.97 billion. For November itself, the metro area had 371 projects covering 1 million square feet. Their total value of $94.59 million fell 6.5 percent short of $101.17 million in November 1996. Statewide, Dodge reported 901 contracts in November for 2.28 million square feet of construction. Their value fell 27.7 percent to $188.4 million from $260.9 million. Home builders to meet in Dallas The National Association of Home Builders will hold its 54th annual convention and exposition Jan. 16-19 at the Dallas Convention Center. More than 65,000 people from 93 countries are expected to attend the convention. Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher is the keynote speaker for opening ceremonies. "We found that more and more people from all over the world are interested in the quality and craftsmanship of American homes," said Kent Colton, executive vice president and CEO of NAHB. …