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AIA Posts Healthy Outlook for Construction

Thursday, February 2, 2017

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Retail, office and hotel construction is forecast to dominate the building recovery in 2017. However, industrial construction is projected to see almost no increase.

construction site
© iStock.com / Tonda

Retail is forecast to grow at a rate of 6.8 percent in 2017, the forecast suggests.

Those are the findings in a new report issued by the American Institute of Architects (AIA). The semi-annual Consensus Construction Forecast projects growth in overall nonresidential building spending of almost 6 percent, just below the pace of growth for 2016.

Last year was considered a successful year for the nonresidential building sector, the report notes.


The AIA Consensus Construction Forecast Panel is conducted twice a year with the leading nonresidential construction forecasters in the United States, including Dodge Data & Analytics, Wells Fargo Securities, IHS-Global Insight, Moody’s economy.com, CMD Group, Associated Builders & Contractors and FMI. 

In 2018, the institutional construction sectors will represent a large portion of growth, particularly the education structures market, the report suggests.

Shortage Looms

Among other potential market uncertainties, the forecasters warn that the lack of qualified workers still looms over the construction industry’s overall recovery.

“Though most conditions look favorable, virtually every segment of the design and construction market is reporting that recruiting and retaining qualified staff is a growing issue,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, Ph.D., Hon. AIA.

“Many workers left the industry during the downturn, and others left the workforce entirely, and rebuilding a competent and productive workforce is a challenge, particularly when the national unemployment rate is below five percent.”

For the full report, click here.


Tagged categories: Building design; Business conditions; Business matters; Construction; Design; Economy; Market forecasts; Trends

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