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Monthly Update: Construction Activity

March '23, Latest Data
Published on 4/19/23

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Houston construction has begun to post some worrisome signs. Although the number of jobs in the sector has slipped marginally, there’s been a significant drop in new contract awards. 

Dodge Data & Analytics reports $6.6 billion in contracts were awarded in the first three months of ’23, down 27.0 percent from the $9.0 billion issued over the comparable period in ’22. Nonresidential activity fell 27.0 percent, residential activity 31.0 percent, and infrastructure awards were off 16.4 percent. Adjusted for inflation, this is the weakest start to the year of the past five years.

Although construction employment has slipped in recent months, contractors continue to complain about worker shortages. The shortages are affecting schedules and project costs. 

Associated General Contractors of America, Houston Chapter notes that builders have become more adept at accounting for uncertain lead times, that materials costs have improved over this time last year, and most contractors are still seeing to bid on local projects.

Prepared by Greater Houston Partnership Research

Patrick Jankowski, CERP
Chief Economist 
Senior Vice President, Research

Clara Richardson
Research Associate



Building Activity Key Economic Indicators
$6.6 billion

Construction starts in Houston totaled $6.6 billion through March '23.

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