Healthy Advances Forecast Through 2017
Mid-year update projects somewhat slower gains in construction activity for both this year and next.
The national economy seems to be on a slower growth path so far in 2016, in part due to the growing list of national and international vulnerabilities that continue to appear. This slower growth in the broader economy is beginning to put downward pressure on the construction industry. After a solid performance last year, where most commercial and industrial construction sectors grew by 20 percent or more, 2016 was viewed as a year where activity was expected to moderate.
The year has gotten off to a solid start, but the American Institute of Architects’ Consensus Construction Forecast Panel expects growth to begin to moderate as the year progresses. Overall building construction spending is expected to grow around 6 percent this year, and stay in that range for 2017. Commercial construction sectors are projected to be the strongest performers this year, with the institutional categories moving back a bit from their pace of last year. Next year, the commercial sectors are expected to see slower yet still healthy levels of growth, while most institutional sectors will see a somewhat accelerated pace of activity.