Development Trends

The Delaware Office of State Planning Coordination collects building permit and development application approval information annually from each of the state's three counties and 57 municipalities. This data collection started in 2008 as part of the Office's effort to inform local efforts to promote development activity around existing infrastructure and in compliance with comprehensive plans.

This data is unique in that it is collected and reported in a consistent way based on information gathered directly from all statewide jurisdictions that issue building permits and development approvals. The Development Trends Data reflect two indicators of local government activity, development approvals and actual building permits.

  • Development approval information shows where developers have sought and obtained approvals from local governments to build projects. These data can be used to track where developers are preparing to build in the future.

  • Building permit data indicate where actual land development activity is occurring. Because permit information is actual, rather than speculative, it is a better indicator of actual market demand and development trends.

Data are collected by tax parcel, which allows detailed geospatial analysis of development trends using a variety of GIS tools. The full description and detail of Development Trend analysis can be found in OSPC's Annual Report to the Governor which can be accessed on our Publications page. Development Trends data can be accessed through feature and map services on Delaware FirstMap – our enterprise GIS system or downloaded as individual data sets for Building Permits or Development Applications.