Nonresidential construction starts up significantly thanks to Javits Center, Moynihan Hall projects

Institutional developments picking up slack in commercial construction market

The Jacob K. Javits Convention Center expansion (top) and the Moynihan Station Train Hall
The Jacob K. Javits Convention Center expansion (top) and the Moynihan Station Train Hall

New construction starts for nonresidential projects tripled to more than $3 billion in August due largely to massive undertakings at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center and the Moynihan Train Hall.

The total dollar volume for nonresidential construction starts in new York City jumped to $3.66 billion in August, a 203 percent increase from $1.21 billion a year earlier, according to data from Dodge Data & Analytics reported by the Commercial Observer.

Through August, the city saw $12.36 billion worth of nonresidential construction starts, a 54 percent increase over the first eight months of 2016. Much of that spending is buoyed by institutional developments like the Javits Center and Moynihan Hall, as construction starts for commercial buildings have waned this year, the CO reported.

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“What this means is that as we approach the peak of a nonresidential building cycle, institutional building makes a larger contribution towards keeping the expansion going,” Robert Murray, Dodge’s chief economist, told the CO. “This is the typical progression of a nonresidential building cycle, because it generally takes longer to get the financing arranged for institutional building projects.”

Murray did note that the Related Companies, Oxford Properties Group and Mitsui Fudosan America’s 50 Hudson Yards started construction last month and will show up in Dodge’s next report. The developers landed a $1.5 billion construction loan for the project earlier this year.

“[The construction market] is not heading for a collapse anytime soon,” Murray said. [CO]Rich Bockmann