Despite a significant uptick in the value of infrastructure projects, North Carolina’s overall total for new construction contracts fell 23% in April, according to McGraw-Hill Construction, publisher of ENR Southeast. The decline resulted in an estimated $912.6 million in new contracts during the month, down from last April’s $1.2-billion total.

McGraw-Hill Construction estimated April’s total for the nonbuilding category, which includes infrastructure work, at $168.4 million, or 20% ahead of the same period of a year ago. The other two sectors fell significantly, however. The value of nonresidential contracts was 42% lower in April than the same period of a year ago, with about $276.2 million in new work during the month. Residential contract activity declined by 17% for a total of roughly $468 million.

For the year-to-date, McGraw-Hill Construction estimates the overall value of the state’s 2011 contracts at just over $3.7 billion, or 31% lower than the year-ago pace of more than $5.3 billion.

Nonbuilding construction has slowed by 40% compared to the first four months of 2010. Its current year-to-date total of $760.1 million compares to 2010’s pace of nearly $1.3 billion. Nonresidential contracts are estimated at $1.2 billion, or 35% below last year’s early total of nearly $1.9 billion. The value of new residential contracts is estimated at slightly more than $1.7 billion so far this year, or 21% behind 2010’s pace.