The number of building permits issued in the Southland jumped 44% last year, though they still remain well below pre-recession levels.
There were 25,198 units of housing permitted in Los Angeles and Orange Counties, according to figures out Thursday from the Census Bureau. That's up from about 17,500 in 2012 and triple the amount seen at the bottom of the housing market in 2009. But it's still behind the 30,000-plus pace seen in the housing heyday of the mid-2000s.
Building activity has bounced back fastest in the multi-family sector, with 440 permits issued for buildings with five units or more, creating 16,693 apartments and condominiums.
2014 is on pace for further recovery. Through March, permits were up 25% compared with the first three months of last year. Of those permits, two-thirds are in buildings with at least five units.
Riverside and San Bernardino saw permits jump 57%, to 9,348 last year, though that's roughly half as many as seen during the peak of building activity there. Through March, permits in the Inland Empire were flat compared with last year.