2023 has been a strong start for the Portage la Prairie Planning District.

City Councillor Ryan Espey serves as Chair for the board and says this isn't a huge surprise as a lot of work is being done throughout the area.

"Well, it's been very interesting because, the planning district, as we all know, has had a pretty amazing few years with the revenue generated from permits that come in for major developments, and we're all coming off of the tail of over a billion dollars in local investment in the region," says Espey. "All of that, the permits for construction on that, flow through the planning district. So, the planning district has had a really good couple of years."

Espey says there always seems to be a major project in the works which creates a lot of permits. This time, it's the new building going in where the Agassiz Youth Centre used to be.

"We anticipated that that would slow down a little bit, but every time we think about it slowing down, something else seems to happen," says Espey. "Now, we're in the process of building a new hospital, so there is a permitting process that happens throughout that, and the major revenue coming into the planning district over the next little bit, is going to be based on that hospital construction, as well as any other development that goes on in the area. But, the really exciting one is actually the hospital."

Espey anticipates some very exciting things coming up in the next year or two for the City of Portage, saying despite all of the external factors around the city, we seem to be in a period of growth, both in residential and commercial development.