$14.1 million worth of building permits were issued by the City of Sault Ste. Marie last month, down more than 40 per cent from last year's July total but up considerably from 2016.
July's permits, which included $3.5 million in upgrades to the former Alexander Henry High School, compared to $23.8 million in 2017, most of which was attributable to institutional and government sectors.
Just $8.8 million in building permits were issued in 2016, pretty much evenly divided between residential and institutional/government.
July 2015 permits totalled $23.0 million, up from $15.1 million in 2014.
The former Henry is being converted by Algoma District School Board to a new Boréal French Immersion Public School.
Last month, the school board announced a lease agreement under which the renovated building will house a new Sault Ste. Marie Public Library branch as well a daycare, community archive, the school board's plant department and Algoma Huron-Superior Transportation Services.
The Ontario government obtained a permit in July for $1.1 million in improvements at Roberta Bondar Place at 70 Foster Dr.
That project includes an upgrade to the existing fire alarm system and replacement of a standpipe in the parking garage and construction of a new standpipe room.
So far in 2018, the city has issued a total of $53.6 million in building permits, compared to $66.6 million at this time last year.
Meanwhile, Algoma District School Board is undertaking another $11.3 million in upgrades to existing schools this summer:
- Korah Collegiate and Vocational School - locker replacement, entrance upgrade and music room
- White Pines Collegiate and Vocational School - ceiling and lighting upgrades, ventilation upgrades, digital signage
- East View Public School - heating and classroom upgrade
- Grandview Public School - washroom upgrades
- Kiwedin Public School - exterior upgrades
- Prince Charles Public School - gym ventilation
- Mountain View Public School - paving
- Central Public School - parking lot, refurbish washrooms
- Chapleau JK-12 - replace building management system
Information about Huron-Superior Catholic District School board construction projects couldn't be accessed in time for this article.