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Phoenix Ranks #3 in Construction Job Growth

By Eric Jay Toll for The Arizona Builder’s Exchange

With 6,300 new construction jobs over 2011, Phoenix came in third among all U.S. metros with the largest number of jobs gained in year-to-year comparisons.  Los Angeles topped the list with 8,600 new jobs, Houston was next with 6,900. Rounding out the top five metros were Fort Worth-Arlington, Tex., 5,100; and Portland, Ore., 4,700 jobs. A big influence in both Phoenix and Portland metros, says the Associated General Contractors, is construction of the Intel facilities in Chandler, AZ and Hillsboro, Ore.

Overall, the AGC report, said that there are still less than half the construction jobs that had existed before the recession. Organization economists warn that failure of Congress to increase construction spending may result in construction employment stalling and even falling.

A number of markets are already experiencing declines in construction employment. The hardest hit were Atlanta (-7,200 jobs), Tampa (-6,700 jobs), New York City (-6,200 jobs), Philadelphia (-4,300 jobs) and Springfield, Mass. (-3,700 jobs). AGC says that the construction market is stalling as stimulus projects are completed and local governments have no money for new infrastructure projects. Private spending is still somewhat stymied by lack of money in the lending market.

Read more at AGC