Boost for first-quarter construction starts
Non-residential project starts in March saw a surge in March, with their value being 7% ahead of the same period in 2016, according to the latest Glenigan Index. The surge was supported by a stabilisation in hotel and leisure starts and increases in private housing, industrial, retail, amenity, and health and community. Residential starts were 1% higher than a year earlier as a rise in private-housing starts was offset by subdued activity in the social-housing sector.
Overall, the value of work starting on site in the three months to March was 2% higher than during the same period a year ago. On a seasonally adjusted basis, starts were 2% up of the last three months of 2016.
Allan Wilén, Glenigan’s economics director, said, ‘Private residential starts for the three months to March were 6% higher than a year ago and 3% up on the previous quarter on a seasonally adjusted basis.
‘This renewed strengthening in starts is encouraging and should help sustain sector activity growth during the current year.’
Non-residential project starts during the first quarter were 10% up on the previous three months on a seasonally adjusted basis
Glenigan figures exclude projects valued at over £100 million to present clearer time-series trends.
Regions in England that saw double-digit growth during the first quarter compared with a year earlier were the south east (27%), north east (19%) and east (14%). Wales had a growth of 13%. There was also growth in the London and the north west of England.
Elsewhere, the value of project starts slipped back, with the sharpest drop being the West Midlands at 20%.