Properties Magazine May 2017 : Page 12

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96\VWHPV  758(52,/LJKWLQJ$QDO\VLV  >ŝĐĞŶƐĞEŽ͘&#1c;>ͲϮϰϭϲϭ ZZZ$&(OHFWULF2+,2FRP 13%. Also strengthening in March were religious buildings, up 9%; and public buildings (courthouses and detention centers), up 4%. On the negative side, educational facilities in March dropped 14% after February’s 11% gain. The commercial side of the nonresi-dential building market increased 7% in March, showing improvement after a 10% drop in February. Office construc-tion climbed 41%, lifted by the start of five projects valued each in excess of $100 million. Commercial garages also advanced in March, rising 12%. In con-trast, March witnessed declines for hotels, down 7%; stores and shopping centers, down 8%; and warehouses, down 14%. The 3% decline for total construction starts on an unadjusted basis during the first three months of 2017 relative to last year was due to a varied pat-tern by major sector. Nonbuilding construction dropped 17% year-to-date, with electric utilities/gas plants down 72% while public works climbed 20% (reflecting the start of several large pipe-line projects in early 2017). Residential building slipped a modest 1% year-to-date, with multifamily housing down 18% while single family housing grew 9%. Nonresidential building registered a 7% gain year-to-date, with institutional building up 35%, commercial building down 9%, and manufacturing building down 44%. By geography, total con-struction starts in the first three months of 2017 showed reduced activity relative to last year in two regions – the South Central, down 26%; and the Northeast, down 3%. Total construction gains year-to-date were reported in the West, up 1%; the South Atlantic, up 11%; and the Midwest, up 12%. Further perspective comes from look-ing at 12-month moving totals, in this case the 12 months ending March 2017 versus the 12 months ending March 2016. On this basis, total construction starts were up 2%. By major sector, nonbuilding construction decreased 8%, with electric utilities/gas plants down 40% while public works increased 6%. Residential building rose 3%, as a 4% drop for multifamily housing was outweighed by a 7% gain for single family housing. Nonresidential build-ing advanced 7%, with institutional building up 14%, commercial building up 7%, and manufacturing building down 26%. P Properties | May 2017 12

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