Sharp rise in nonresidential construction deals

Contracts for future nonresidential construction in New Hampshire rose dramatically in December.

According to McGraw Hill Construction, based in Lexington, Mass., contracts for future nonresidential construction increased by 130 percent, to $69.3 million, in December 2006, up from the $30 million reported for December 2005.

Contracts for future residential construction rose 7 percent, to $84.6 million, in December 2006, compared to nearly $79 million in December 2005.

Contracts for future nonbuilding construction — including such projects as streets, highways and bridges – declined by 83 percent, to $1.8 million, in December 2006, down from $10.4 million in December 2005.

All told, numbers for December 2006 indicate a 30 percent increase in combined future construction contracts in the state, rising from $119.4 million in December 2005 to $155.7 million in December 2006.

But for the year, total future construction contacts fell by 15 percent from the previous year. In 2005, there were some $2.7 billion such contracts; in 2006, the number was about $2.3 billion.

Nonresidential contracts for the year fell by 11 percent, to $793.6 million, compared to $895.1 million in 2005.

Contracts for residential construction were down by 24 percent, from $1.4 billion in 2005 to nearly $1.1 billion for 2006.

Nonbuilding construction contracts experienced a 7 percent increase, rising from $368.6 million in 2005 to $395 million in 2006. – TRACIE STONE

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