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The total number of US construction starts fell by 14% in November, and the seasonally adjusted annual interest rate was $867.8 billion. With the groundbreaking of three large-scale projects, the number of non-building construction and non-residential construction starts fell by 30% and 21%, respectively, after a substantial increase in October. Housing starts increased slightly by 3%. If there were no major projects in October, the total number of starts in November would increase by 5%.

“Leave aside large projects, the underlying trends continue to indicate that construction starts will recover moderately,” said Chief Economist Richard Branch. “However, even if these projects continue to move forward, due to the continued rise in material prices and labor shortages, in the short-term the outlook is still unclear. And construction in 2022 should have some relief. These challenges will limit the industry’s ability to take full advantage of the large number of projects generated by the infrastructure package in terms of planning and funding. The result will be a moderate start of construction in the near future."

Figure 1 The American glass curtain wall construction 1

Figure 1 The American glass curtain wall construction 1

The number of non-residential construction starts fell 21% in November, and the seasonally adjusted annual rate was $281.1 billion. This drop is due to the start of two large manufacturing projects that began last month. Without data for these two projects, non-residential construction projects would have grown by 5% in November. The number of commercial construction starts fell by 10% in November, and only parking lots and warehouses made small gains. The manufacturing industry dropped by 96%. In contrast, all types of institutions are rising, with a rise of 28% at the start; in the first 11 months of 2021, non-residential construction starts increased by 11%, and commercial starts increased by 7% , Manufacturing start-ups increased by 86%, and institutional start-ups increased by 5%.

The largest non-residential construction projects that broke ground in November were the $2.6 billion San Diego International Airport Terminal 1 Renewal Project, the $840 million Robley Rex VA Medical Center in Louisville, Kentucky, and the $419 million Milwaukee. Wisconsin Convention Center expansion project.

Figure 1 The San Diego International Airport Terminal 1 Renewal Project

Figure 2 The San Diego International Airport Terminal 1 Renewal Project

The largest multi-family residential building project that broke ground in November was the $300 million St. Atlanta Mixed-Use Project Phase I in Dunwoody, Georgia; the $237 million Minneapolis North Loop Green Project 3, and the $200 million Dollar residential building on Kilmarnock Street, Boston.

Figure 2 The Minneapolis North Loop Green Project 3

Figure 3 The Minneapolis North Loop Green Project 3

In terms of regions, the total number of starts in the Northeast and Midwest of the United States has improved, but the South Atlantic, South Central, and Western regions have declined.


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