The value of new construction contracts for future construction in Florida fell by 17% overall in August, led by major declines in both the nonresidential and nonbuilding categories, according to McGraw-Hill Construction, publisher of Southeast Construction. During August, the state experienced slightly more than $1.4 billion in new contracts for future construction. The previous August, the value of contracts totaled more than $1.7 billion.

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The nonresidential market fell 29% during August to tally nearly $405.9 million, down from the $575.5 million recorded last August.

The value of nonbuilding contracts fell 35% in August, for a $311.8-million total, according to McGraw-Hill Construction. That compares to the year-ago figure of $480.3 million.

The latest monthly figures bring Florida’s year-to-date total to nearly level with 2009’s pace, roughly $18.1 billion.

The nonresidential market is the only negative sector to date. It is an estimated 33% behind last year’s pace, with about $4.7 billion in new contracts, compared to last year’s $7-billion pace.

Despite the August decline, the nonbuilding category is a significant 22% ahead for the first eight months of 2010, with roughly $7.4 billion in new starts.

Residential is also positive through August. According to McGraw-Hill Construction, this market is 20% ahead of last year’s pace, with nearly $6 billion in new starts.