NYC Construction In 2020 Slowest In Nearly A Decade: Study
The clangs and clatter of construction reverberated less across the city in 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic hit, a new study found. Total construction activity in New York City hit the lowest point since 2012, according to the Real Estate Board of New York study.
“The reality is that our City is not currently getting enough construction projects underway – and it is not creating enough housing, including affordable housing, to address immediate and long-term needs,” James Whelan, the board’s president, said in statement.
The study adds to a growing number of year-end snapshots that detail the effects the coronavirus pandemic and ensuing lockdowns had on the city’s economy. It found significant declines in construction filings across the city in 2020.
New building filings filed that year proposed 42.67 million construction square feet — an impressive-sounding number but a 28 percent decline from 2019, the study found.
The square footage for major construction projects dropped even more dramatically — 11.6 million square feet, a 35 percent decline, according to the study.
And developers proposed a scant 27,402 residential units that year, a 17 percent decline from 2019, the study found.
The real estate board, in a release, pressed the case that Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Sen. Chuck Schumer and President Joe Biden should invest in infrastructure plans. Cuomo, in his recent State of the State, recently proposed a $306 billion infrastructure plan, along with calling for converting unused commercial space into residential use.
“It’s welcome news to the industry that Governor Cuomo, Senator Schumer and President Biden are committed to investing in middle-class careers with benefits through large-scale, pivotal infrastructure projects, and we look forward to a year where construction leads the way forward in pioneering New York’s way out of the economic crisis, just as it always has during previous crises,” Gary LaBarbera, president of the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York, said in a statement.
The article was published on patch.com