March construction starts fall 1 percent

By |  April 25, 2016

At a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $660.5 billion, new construction starts in March fell 1 percent with a 140 reading for the Dodge Index, reports Dodge Data & Analytics.

In March, nonresidential building climbed 23 percent to $228.1 billion. The institutional building group rising 44 percent, led by a 339 percent increase in the transportation terminal category. In addition, educational facilities, the largest nonresidential building category by dollar volume, rose 20 percent in March. The amusement and recreational category advanced 38 percent, the public buildings category rose 55 percent, healthcare facilities increased 53 percent and church construction fell 54 percent.

The commercial categories as a group increased 5 percent in March, with hotel construction increasing 47 percent, store construction rising 19 percent and the manufacturing plant category rising 20 percent. Despite this, office construction fell 27 percent and warehouse construction retreated 13 percent.

Residential building in March grew 3 percent to $292 billion. Multifamily housing increased 15 percent and single-family housing slipped 2 percent.

Nonresidential construction in March fell 30 percent to $140.4 billion. The electric utility and gas plant category fell 38 percent and the public works categories as a group fell 24 percent. In this category, water supply systems fell 27 percent, sewers were down 31 percent and river/harbor development decreased 52 percent. The miscellaneous public works category also fell 40 percent in March.

So far, construction starts so far in 2016, compared to the same period in 2015, are down 10 percent. Nonresidential building dropped 9 percent, with manufacturing plant construction down 53 percent, the institutional building segment down 9 percent and the commercial building segment up 5 percent. Residential building grew 12 percent, with single-family housing up 11 percent and multifamily housing up 13 percent. Finally, none building construction fell 34 percent, with public works down 28 percent and electric utilities/gas plants down 42 percent.

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About the Author:

Allison Kral is the former senior digital media manager for North Coast Media (NCM). She completed her undergraduate degree at Ohio University where she received a Bachelor of Science in magazine journalism from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism. She works across a number of digital platforms, which include creating e-newsletters, writing articles and posting across social media sites. She also creates content for NCM's Portable Plants magazine, GPS World magazine and Geospatial Solutions. Her understanding of the ever-changing digital media world allows her to quickly grasp what a target audience desires and create content that is appealing and relevant for any client across any platform.

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