The District of Columbia kicked off 2010 with a healthy uptick in the value of new construction contracts, according to McGraw-Hill Construction, publisher of Mid-Atlantic Construction. A surge in the nonresidential sector helped the region’s overall total for January contracts to improve significantly, compared to the same period of a year ago.

The District’s nonresidential sector totaled more than $89 million in January contracts, or 86% ahead of the $48 million reported a year ago.

January’s residential contracts totaled nearly $6.2 million, ahead of the $2.3 million of a year ago.

McGraw-Hill Construction reported that no new nonbuilding contracts moved forward during January. Last year, $1 million in new infrastructure projects had been initiated in January.

The company estimated the District of Columbia’s new January contracts at approximately $95.2 million, or 85% ahead of the $51.3 million of a year ago.