If the construction sector were a patient, it would have moved in the past year from intensive care to out-patient status.
Now it’s starting to look like it could be on its way back toward robust health. But let’s not get too ambitious – after all, a couple years ago, construction was pretty much on life support and there was question about whether there was even a pulse.
With that caveat, the latest news is good news:
— Georgia led the nation for falling unemployment in construction in the past year, according to Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc.
The jobless rate for construction fell from 11.1 percent a year ago to 7.7 percent this August, the organization said. That is still the ninth-highest in the country, however, a reflection of just how badly the sector was pounded in the recession.
Georgia is one of only two states in which the unemployment rate dipped last month. The other was Indiana. The national rate for construction rose 0.6 percentage points during August, according to the group.
The jobless rate for construction is still significantly above the overall state rate of 6.0 percent for Georgia.
— So far this year, the value of construction started in metro Atlanta is 30 percent above that of the same period of 2014. And, the bulk of the action is in residential building – including single family homes, town homes, condos and apartments, according to Dodge Data & Analytics.
Residential building is 43 percent above its 2014 levels, according to a report this week from Dodge, which describes itself as the leading provider of data, analysis and news to the industry.
In contrast, the flow of new projects has decelerated: up 8 percent from last year, says Dodge.
Of course, the biggest projects in the area are the new stadiums for the Braves and the Falcons and they were begun awhile ago.