The number of stalled construction projects citywide fell by 8% from October 2010 to October 2011, according to a New York Building Congress study of Dept. of Buildings (DOB) inspection records and Dept. of Finance (DOF) records. However, the amount of stalled projects—roughly 638 this year—is still 40% above the number in the DOB's database for 2009. DOF estimates the aggregate market value of the current stalled projects in the database is $1.3 billion.

"It is encouraging to see that we have stemmed the flow of stalled sites and that at least a portion of these projects are moving once again," says Richard T. Anderson, NYBC president. The organization has called for the city to establish a program that includes tax incentives and zoning adjustments to restart stalled sites.

The study also indicates that each of the boroughs showed a modest decrease in the number of stalled sites. Brooklyn remains the leader, however, with a total of 299, or 47% of the citywide total. Queens has made the most progress, the study shows, as its number of stalled projects dropped 14%, to 131 this year. Manhattan posted 126 stalled sites, Staten Island registered 52 and the Bronx, 30.

Residential projects, particularly multifamily projects, dominate the database. Some 37% of the stalled sites remain vacant, indicating that developers have obtained land and construction permits but have not begun work, NYBC says.