Franklin County building permits for 2012 were down compared to 2011.

In 2012, there were 696 building permits issued compared to 721 in 2011, according to year-end reports from the building department.

But while the number of permits was 25 less this year, the total construction value for the two years was close.

In 2011, the total construction value of the building permits was $29.8 million, or $22,708 more than in 2012.

There were 87 permits for single-family homes in 2012 compared to 101 the year before.

County Building Department Director Bill Placht said building permit numbers have stayed flat the past several years.

In 2008 there were 839 total permits; 2009, 752; and 2010, 734.

But Placht said the last quarter of 2012 started showing an increase in residential and commercial construction. He added that he has heard from contractors who say business is picking up.

Asked if he thinks this year will bring more development than 2012, Placht said so far things look better.

“There’s more activity out there,” Placht said.

Other permits in 2012 were:

Other non-housekeeping shelters (pavilion for the Union Fire Protection District), one; amusement, social and recreational, one; churches/ religious, two.

Commercial structure other than building, one; service stations and repair garages, one; public works, eight; educational facilities, one; other nonresidential buildings, (such as sheds, barns, storage garages), 68.

Stores and customer services, one; structures other than buildings, 33; residential additions/modifications, 79.

Nonresidential additions/modifications, 21; garages and carports, 59; commercial storage buildings, five; manufactured homes, 57; electric permits, 212; and sewer permits, 59.