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Alaska 2011 Construction Forecast

Research Matters No. 50. Alaska's Construction Spending: 2011 Forecast

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - February 2, 2011 -- Construction spending in Alaska in 2011 will be about $7.1 billion, up 3% from 2010. The biggest increases are in spending for health care, utilities, and education. Spending for most other purposes is either close to what it was in 2010 or down. These are among the findings of ISER researchers Scott Goldsmith and Mary Killorin, in the construction spending forecast ISER prepares annually for the Associated General Contractors of Alaska. Other findings include:

• New or expanded hospitals and health clinics being built in both urban and rural areas are driving dramatic increases in health-care spending.

• Utility spending is up sharply this year,  with new power plants under construction or planned along the railbelt in Southcentral and Interior Alaska.  Federal grants and loans are also financing  improved broadband access in rural Alaska.  

• Federal stimulus money that helped fund transportation, sanitation, and other projects in the past couple of years has now mostly been spent.

• The biggest uncertainty in this year's forecast is oil and gas spending, with a number of major projects facing environmental and legal challenges. If most planned projects go forward, spending could be close to $3 billion; if not, spending could be considerably less.

• Last year's large state capital budget and big bond packages will fund a wide range of projects, but especially schools and roads.

Read the new forecast at http://www.iser.uaa.alaska.edu/Publications/2011constructionforecast.pdf .

If you have questions, get in touch with Scott Goldsmith at 907-786-7720 or afosg2@uaa.alaska.edu.

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