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By: Kendall Jones on July 24th, 2020

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Construction Industry Weekly News Recap – July 24, 2020

Construction Industry News | COVID-19

Here’s a quick rundown of this week’s top news and happenings in the construction industry. Each week, we’ll take a look at some of the interesting local, regional, and national stories about construction to keep you better informed of the goings-on in the industry.

Nonresidential Construction Spending Expected to Drop for First Time in Almost a Decade

Unsurprisingly, nonresidential construction spending is expected to decline for the first time in nearly 10 years. According to the Consensus Construction Forecast from the American Institute of Architects, nonresidential construction spending will drop 8% in 2020 and a little under 5% in 2021. The biggest drop is expected in commercial construction, including retail stores, hotels, and office buildings, at a 12% decrease in 2020 and an 8% decrease in 2021. – July 22, 2020 (The Architect’s Newspaper)

Construction Costs Fall for First Time in Nearly 10 Years

Construction costs fell 1% from the first quarter of 2020 to the second, according to Turner Construction’s Building Cost Index. This is the first decrease in construction costs since 2010. Turner’s BCI measures costs for nonresidential construction based on labor rates, material costs, competitiveness, and productivity. – July 21, 2020 (Global Construction Review)

Sixteen More Cases of Coronavirus Reported at SoFi Stadium Construction

Over the course of a week, 16 more cases of coronavirus have been reported by workers at the SoFi Stadium construction site in Los Angeles. There have now been 49 confirmed cases of COVID-19 dating back to March when an ironworker was the first to test positive for the coronavirus.

The new home of the NFL’s L.A. Rams & Chargers is set to host its first regular season game on September 13 with the Rams hosting the Dallas Cowboys. The 70,000-seat stadium is over budget with the Rams requesting $500 million in loans from the NFL back in May to cover construction budget shortfalls caused by the pandemic. – July 21, 2020 (CBS Los Angeles)

First-Of-Its-Kind Microgrid Construction Starts at Pittsburgh Airport

Pittsburgh International Airport started construction on a new energy plant featuring almost 7,800 solar panels and five natural gas-fired generators. The new microgrid will generate approximately 23 MW of power, which is enough to power the terminals, hangars, airfield, and maintenance buildings as well as the nearby Hyatt hotel and Sunoco gas station. – July 21, 2020 (The Business Journal)

Dozens of Road Contractors Took PPP Loans Despite Government Contracts

According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, a large number of contractors took out loans through the Payroll Protection Program despite having active government contracts they were working on. In Florida, at least 68 road contractors with active state projects took out loans. Whether or not those contractors should have been able to take out loans through the program given is currently being looked into by the Government Accountability Office. – July 19, 2020 (The Week)

Thirty-One States See Increases in Construction Jobs

Construction employment increased in 31 states and the District of Columbia from May to June and dropped in 18 states, according to the Associated General Contractors of America. New York, which finally opened back up construction in May, had the largest gains with 42,000 new jobs. Massachusetts, where Boston and other cities had shut down construction due to the COVID-19 pandemic, had the largest percentage increase at 16.3% which equaled 19,700 construction jobs. Of the 18 states that lost jobs, Louisiana took the top spot with 3,900 jobs lost. – July 20, 2020 (Pit & Quarry)

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About Kendall Jones

Kendall Jones is the Editor in Chief at ConstructConnect. He has been writing about the construction industry for years, covering a wide range of topics from safety and technology to industry news and operating insights.