Glenigan reports rise in project starts

The picture painted by Glenigan’s June review is of project sizes getting smaller.

Major project-starts – projects costing more than £100m – were down 32% in the three months to May 2022 compared to the previous three months, and down 31% against March-May 2021.

Sub-£100m starts were up 9% on the previous three months, which according to Glenigan indicates that the sector is recovering from a gloomy winter.

The overall value of work starting on site each month averaged £6.54bn during the three months to May, which was 5% down on the preceding three months and 22% down on the year.

Main contract awards (+1%) and detailed planning approvals (+13%) were up compared to the preceding three months – by 1% and 13% respectively – but were down 18% and 5% year-on-year.

Glenigan economic director Allan Wilen said: “The slight uptick in project-starts reported in this June Review points to promising signs of recovery for the sector, news which is sure to be welcomed by industry professionals after a challenging few months.

“Construction has suffered delayed project-starts and planning approvals for almost a year as the industry has been squeezed by rising material costs, labour shortages and the fallout from the Russia-Ukraine war.

“I am hopeful that the offshoots of recovery highlighted here signal a promising outlook for the second half of 2022, particularly as the sector continues to reap the rewards of a strong development pipeline of contract awards built up since the pandemic.

“We’re certainly not out of the woods yet, but I remain cautiously optimistic for the rest of the year if this upward trend continues.”

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