MARIETTA — Residential construction bounced back in May after taking a dip a month earlier.
One hundred fifty-three housing permits were issued in Cobb and its six cities, an 82 percent increase over April’s 84 permits.
March saw 124 permits, and 131 were released in February.
May’s numbers are better than what the county issued a year ago, when 132 permits were issued, but 2014’s year-to-date total of 593 lags behind what they were in 2013, which was 707.
One hundred five permits were issued in unincorporated Cobb County in May, and one area seeing growth is Mableton, in south Cobb.
Personal finance website NerdWallet.com recently ranked Mableton fifth on a list of “Top Ten Cities on the Rise in Georgia,” citing gains in income and population from 2009 to 2012.
The website says working-age population grew 10.4 percent to 29,507 residents, and the median income for full-time workers increased 12.6 percent, reaching $47,532 in 2012.
Betty Gray, a retired educator and former Cobb school board member, has lived in Mableton for 57 years. She says the area’s proximity to Interstates 75, 20 and 285, as well as the airport, makes Mableton an attractive place for people who are starting families. Gray said young families bring an energy to the area and she is pleased by those who are coming.
“It’s a real positive growth and think it will continue,” she said, adding Mableton is in the metro Atlanta area, but retains a “small, community feel.”
Gray said she encourages people to “come see the heart of Mableton and not just Six Flags.”
In the NerdWallet list, it highlighted Mable House, which has an amphitheater and arts center where residents can take classes and see art exhibits.
Marietta led Cobb’s cities with the highest number of housing starts for the third month in a row, with 22 permits granted by the city in May.
Rusty Roth, Marietta’s planning and zoning manager, said while it’s hard to tell how much the economy is improving, he called Marietta’s numbers “a good sign.”
“It shows there’s more confidence in people to spend and the banks to lend,” he said.
Roth said Marietta is fitting for people who are looking to downsize, move to smaller lots and have access to the Square and its surrounding restaurants and entertainment venues.