Vulcan economist offers forecast at GCAA event

By |  February 28, 2013

Baron Worthington, manager of economic analysis at Vulcan Materials Co., shared his outlook on the various construction sectors Feb. 27 during a short session at the Georgia Construction Aggregate Association’s 2013 Management Workshop in Atlanta. According to Worthington, housing starts is the category providing the biggest reason for optimism among Georgia aggregate producers.

“We’re coming off some really low numbers,” he says. “Still, this is a great sign. Housing tends to lead construction. In Georgia, this is happening all over the state.”

Worthington is also optimistic about Georgia highway awards. Short-term growth is somewhat negative, he says, but his long-term forecast is positive.

Georgia infrastructure awards, meanwhile, are negative for both the short and long term. The nonresidential building trend Worthington sees developing in Georgia is another concern.

“The short-term momentum has dropped off,” he says.

Construction of schools in Georgia has declined 59 percent since 2008, Worthington adds, but he sees growth in this area because the demographics within the state dictate a need for new facilities.

“Demand is not what it used to be,” Worthington says. Today, 65 percent of construction is based on public funding. This was 50 percent at one point.”

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