July Was Rough for North Carolina Construction Starts
The overall volume of new North Carolina construction contracts fell 31% in July, as just over $1.3 billion worth of projects moved ahead, according to McGraw-Hill Construction.
The decline was due to weakness in the nonresidential and nonbuilding categories, according to McGraw-Hill. Nonresidential projects generated an estimated $268.2 million in new work in July, representing a 48% drop, compared to the same period of a year ago. The nonbuilding category, which includes infrastructure projects, fell 64% compared to last July, for a $331.1-million total.
There was good news in the residential category, however, as housing contracts surged 49% compared to last July to total $713.6 million.
North Carolina’s overall July decline pushed the state’s year-to-date total into negative territory. Through the first seven months, McGraw-Hill Construction now estimates the state’s 2012 construction contracts at $9 billion, or 2% lower than 2011’s pace.
Nonbuilding is the only negative category to date, however, with its $1.8-billion tally equating to a 41% decline compared to 2011.
Nonresidential’s July nosedive barely avoided pushing this category into negative territory for the year, though. This category’s total for the first seven months, $2.9 billion, is now 1% ahead of last year’s pace.
North Carolina’s residential contracts total stands at $4.4 billion through July, a 29% gain compared to a year ago.