Rock Products

MAR 2019

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Page 58 of 95 ROCK products • March 2019 • 57 New construction starts in December fell 10 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $708.9 billion, con- tinuing to retreat after November's 7 percent slide, according to Dodge Data & Analytics. The December downturn reflected diminished activity for each of the three main construction sectors. •  Nonresidential building dropped 14 percent, as its commercial building segment lost momentum following its heightened November amount. •  Residential building pulled back 8 percent, due to reduced activity in December for both single family and multifamily housing. • Nonbuilding construction decreased 9 percent, with a steep plunge by the electric utility/gas plant category that outweighed a December rebound for public works. Highway and bridge construction in December climbed 19 percent. Nonresidential building in December was $242.8 billion (annual rate), down 14 percent from the previous month. The commercial building categories as a group fell 27 percent after register- ing a 15 percent increase in November that featured the start of the $1.5 billion Manchester Pacific Gateway mixed-use complex in San Diego with hotel, office, retail, museum and garage space. Office construction in December dropped 34 percent, following its November amount that included the start of a $750 million Facebook data center in Covington, Ga., the $544 mil- lion office portion of the Manchester Pacific Gateway complex, and a $530 million California state government office building in Sacramento, Calif. The largest office projects that were entered as December construction starts were $400 million for three Microsoft data center buildings in San Antonio, a $222 million data center in Ashburn, Va., and a $135 million Cali- fornia state government office building in Rancho Cordova, Calif. Hotel construction experienced an even larger percentage decline in Decem- ber, plunging 41 percent, after being lifted in November by the $643 million hotel portion of the Manchester Pacific Gateway complex and the $241 million Omni Hotel in Oklahoma City. The larg- est hotel projects that were entered as December construction starts were the $168 million Joseph Nashville Hotel in Nashville and the $83 million hotel por- tion of a $170 million hotel/multifamily mixed-use building in Austin, Texas. Decreased activity in December was also reported for commercial garages, down 30 percent; and warehouses, down 24 percent; although the ware- house category did include the start of a $136 million warehouse complex in Lacey, Wash., and a $130 million ware- house complex in Nampa, Idaho. Store construction was the one com- mercial project type that registered a December gain, rising 32 percent with the help of the $52 million Edens Col- lection shopping mall in Chicago. The manufacturing plant category slipped 2 percent in December, with the largest project entered as a construction start being a $117 million bioenergy plant in Rialto, Calif. The institutional building catego- ries as a group edged up 1 percent in December, after sliding 22 percent in November. Educational facilities pro- vided much of the lift in December, climbing 27 percent with the help of these projects – the $650 million reno- vation of the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum in Washington, D.C., a $118 million high school in Queens, N.Y., and a $101 million high school in Waukee, Iowa. The public buildings category also reg- istered growth in December, advancing 48 percent as a $155 million courthouse reached groundbreaking in Redding, Calif. In addition, December gains were reported for church construction, up 18 percent; and transportation termi- nals, up 1 percent. Reduced activity was reported in December for amuse- ment-related work, down 42 percent; and healthcare facilities, down 16 per- cent; although the latter did include the start of the $175 million Penn Medicine ambulatory care facility in Wayne, Pa. ECONOMICS MONTHLY CONSTRUCTION STARTS (Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rates, In Millions of Dollars) Dec. 2018 Nov. 2018 % Change Nonresidential Building $242,847 $281,088 -14 Residential Building $300,553 $326,104 -8 Nonbuilding Construction $165,475 $181,634 -9 TOTAL Construction $708,875 $788,836 -10 New Construction Starts Decline 10 Percent Highway and Bridge Construction in December Climbed 19 Percent; Up 5 Percent for Year. By Mark S. Kuhar

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