The large size of the building industry on the Sunshine Coast is due mainly to residential construction, although a number of significant commercial and institutional projects are in progress in 2014. There is a strong component of custom home builders, including timber frame and log home construction. A significant boost comes from construction of seasonal homes by non-permanent residents.
Residential planning in the Town of Gibsons is based on population growth of 2.5% annually to 2026. The Upper Gibsons Neighbourhood Plan allows for up to 900 new residential units. New subdivisions are in progress, including Parkland which is heated by the first publicly owned geo-exchange system in Canada. The Harbour Area Neighbourhood Plan outlined opportunities for tourism related development in Gibsons Landing and infill in existing residential neighbourhoods. Commercial and industrial development is envisioned for the corridor along Highway 101. The Gospel Rock Neighbourhood Plan created the potential for another 1100 new residential units but development in this area has not started yet.
Home sales on the Sunshine Coast are strongly influenced by off-coast market factors due to the large number of purchases by owners of “foot loose” businesses, the semi-retired and the retired who are attracted by the high quality of life on the Sunshine Coast and its proximity to Vancouver. The table below shows price elasticity in the Sunshine Coast market.
The Rural Areas in the surrounding Sunshine Coast Regional District each have an Official Community Plan, with areas designated for a range of residential development from low to high density.