The Mayor for Ritchot says construction activity is certainly slowing down in his municipality.

In the first quarter of 2024, the municipality issued 20 building permits worth a combined $4.4 million. Through the same period a year ago, there were 29 permits issued worth $11.3 million. 

"This quarter in 2024 has been one of our slower ones comparatively to 2023 and even 2022," says Chris Ewen. "We've just not seen the growth spurt that we had been seeing."

However, Ewen says in speaking with other mayors and reeves throughout southern Manitoba, he has come to realize that what is happening in Ritchot is not isolated to his municipality.

"It seems to be kind of status quo," he says.

Ewen notes it appears inflation is really taking a bite out of the spike in construction that they had been noticing.

And Ewen suggests this trend being felt in 2024 might be around for a while.

"I always want to be a positive mayor and say that things are going to get stronger and better every month," says Ewen. "I don't feel that way this year. I think we're going to be pretty stagnant."

But that is not to say that the municipality will sit back and just accept that this will be a slower year. Quite the contrary. Ewen says Ritchot has a great administration and a great council that will push initiatives and incentives to contractors, builders, developers and homeowners. 

"Things are going to happen in Ritchot," says Ewen, just at a different pace.

Ewen says his best guess is that this construction slowdown might last until late 2025.

The Mayor stresses that the reason for this trend has nothing to do with a lack of necessary infrastructure in Ritchot. 

"I believe that this is definitely market change," says Ewen, noting the municipality has the ability and capacity for a strong year of construction.