'Major downturn' for construction

March 19, 2008
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HardhatWondering why development news seems to have ground to a halt? The nation's housing and economic woes are hitting development firms and slowing the demand for construction. The American Institute of Architects said in a study released today that "commercial construction across the country is experiencing a major downturn." A leading indicator of the demand for construction work fell to its lowest level since October 2001, leaving an average lag time of almost a year between architectural billings and construction spending. Some firms are paring their workforce; others are bidding on more stable projects such as schools, hospitals and government buildings. Construction costs are falling. What's next?
  • Cory, may you please try to update us on those two infill buildings on south Meridian Street? Thank you!
  • Now that the legislative session is over, seems like the new mayor might finally get around to deciding on tax abatements/public monies for some of the proposed major projects. Any thoughts on what will become of these: JW, MSA, PennCentre?
  • Unless I'm mistaken, the JW deal has already been inked. It was one of the last things the Peterson administration did and they consulted with Ballard to make sure he was onboard.
  • Another ray of sunshine from our beloved Cory.

    I'm actually surprised he didn't blame this downturn on Premier Properties!
  • Yes, the JW deal was set with Peterson. It will soon move to construction phase, I believe, but I know all the details have been signed off on (as of Dec 07)
  • So who is slow?
    Have you spoken with the local architectural/engineering firms? Local G.C.'s??
    Does Cory have information that is not being shared? There seem to be many jobs out for bid at this time and the dodge is full of things that are coming...so what was this based upon?
    Ahh...I re-read the article..AIA says we are down.

    Local news..it would be great.
  • The Wall street Journal article that I read was exactly opposite of this reports..showing commerical consttirction as being fairly strong in most cities.
  • Anyone else hearing what crownhilldigger is hearing? Are there still lots of jobs out for bid in Indianapolis?

    Many of the people I'm talking to are getting nervous about a low level of work available.
  • Well Cory I guess its you and me. Agreeably I disagree that there is a slow down locally and I base my input from direct solicitations that I made to principals within a couple of our top union and non-union GC's as well as w/their peers within 2 local AE firms.

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  1. With Pence running the ship good luck with a new government building on the site. He does everything on the cheap except unnecessary roads line a new beltway( like we need that). Things like state of the art office buildings and light rail will never be seen as an asset to these types. They don't get that these are the things that help a city prosper.

  2. Does the $100,000,000,000 include salaries for members of Congress?

  3. "But that doesn't change how the piece plays to most of the people who will see it." If it stands out so little during the day as you seem to suggest maybe most of the people who actually see it will be those present when it is dark enough to experience its full effects.

  4. That's the mentality of most retail marketers. In this case Leo was asked to build the brand. HHG then had a bad sales quarter and rather than stay the course, now want to go back to the schlock that Zimmerman provides (at a considerable cut in price.) And while HHG salesmen are, by far, the pushiest salesmen I have ever experienced, I believe they are NOT paid on commission. But that doesn't mean they aren't trained to be aggressive.

  5. The reason HHG's sales team hits you from the moment you walk through the door is the same reason car salesmen do the same thing: Commission. HHG's folks are paid by commission they and need to hit sales targets or get cut, while BB does not. The sales figures are aggressive, so turnover rate is high. Electronics are the largest commission earners along with non-needed warranties, service plans etc, known in the industry as 'cheese'. The wholesale base price is listed on the cryptic price tag in the string of numbers near the bar code. Know how to decipher it and you get things at cost, with little to no commission to the sales persons. Whether or not this is fair, is more of a moral question than a financial one.