NEW YORK (AP) _ The value of building permits issued by the nation's 200 largest cities rose to $55.1 billion in 1985, a 10 percent increase over the previous year, the Dun & Bradstreet Corp. reported Tuesday.

Several cities in the industrial Midwest were among those with the largest percent increases, reflecting a rise in construction in those areas, while activity in parts of the Sunbelt leveled off, Dun & Bradstreet said.

The largest percentage increase was reported in Kansas City, Kan., where permit values rose 301.1 percent to $216.5 million from $54 million in 1984. A $170.5 million permit issued for the construction of a new General Motors Corp. facility was largely responsible for the sharp increase.

Ranked second was Cambridge, Mass., with an increase of 208.4 percent to $520 million from $168.6 million a year ago.

Other top-ranked cities, according to the private business-information group, were: Trenton, N.J., with a 197.5 percent increase in permit values to $50.4 million; New Bedford, Mass., up 156.8 percent to $29.6 million, and Dearborn, Mich., up 150 percent to $129.2 million.

The cities with the sharpest decrease in building permit values were: Yonkers, N.Y., down 82.2 percent to $40.8 million; Mobile, Ala., down 65.2 percent to $88.9 million; Peoria, Ill., down 54.6 percent to $25.5 million; Duluth, Minn., down 43.9 percent to $16.3 million, and Lowell, Mass., down 42.3 percent to $70.8 million.