For the first three months of 2015, total construction starts on an unadjusted basis were up 28 percent from the same period a year ago.
The 28 percent jump during the first three months of 2015 for total construction starts on an unadjusted basis compared to last year reflected growth for all three major construction sectors.
- Nonresidential building year-to-date increased 10 percent, with commercial building up 6 percent, manufacturing building up 10 percent, and institutional building up 12 percent.
- Nonbuilding construction year-to-date soared 74 percent, with electric utilities and gas plants up 464 percent and public works up 13 percent.
- Residential building year-to-date advanced 12 percent, with single family housing up 11 percent and multifamily housing up 17 percent.
Through the first three months of 2015, the top five metropolitan markets ranked by the dollar volume of multifamily projects were as follows – New York, Miami, Boston, Washington, D.C., and Houston. The New York metropolitan area during this time comprised 23 percent of the U.S. multifamily construction dollar amount. By comparison, the next four metropolitan areas combined comprised 20 percent of the U.S. multifamily construction dollar amount during this time.
By geography, total construction starts during the January-March period of 2015 showed this performance – the South Central, up 98 percent; the South Atlantic, up 17 percent; the Northeast, up 10 percent; the West, up 1 percent; and the Midwest, unchanged from a year ago.
Additional perspective comes from looking at 12-month moving totals, in this case the 12 months ending March 2015 versus the 12 months ending March 2014. On this basis, total construction starts were up 13 percent, as a result of this behavior by major sector – nonresidential building, up 22 percent; residential building, up 11 percent; and nonbuilding construction, up 6 percent.
By geography, the 12 months ending March 2015 revealed the following for total construction starts versus the prior 12 months – the South Central, up 32 percent; the South Atlantic, up 16 percent; the West, up 7 percent; and the Midwest and Northeast, each up 3 percent.