The election and inauguration of Donald J. Trump appears to be a welcome development for the U.S. construction industry.
With his background and experience in construction and real estate development, President Trump understands the important role that construction plays in the growth of our economy and the vitality of our cities.
During the course of their campaigns, both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton highlighted the need for increased federal investment in infrastructure. Under President Trump’s latest proposal, up to $550 billion in federal funds could be invested, presumably over a five-year period, in infrastructure and public works projects.
The ways in which the Trump proposals will affect construction will become clearer as more details come forth, including how these proposals make their way through Congress.
For the moment, it’s still believed that total construction starts in 2017 will increase five percent, with some dampening for healthcare-related projects accompanied by improvement for public works construction.
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President Trump’s emphasis on upgrading and developing public infrastructure, including roads, bridges, airports, transit systems and ports will, with the approval of the 115th Congress, bring much needed revitalization to U.S. infrastructure and create favorable business conditions across the design and construction industries.
While the specifics of federal infrastructure investment in 2017 and beyond will become clearer in the months ahead, the ideas already proposed should help spur Congressional action on two existing legislative items, including the Water Resources Development Act and the 2017 Federal Appropriations Bill, which make provisions for infrastructure spending on water management, transportation and energy infrastructure.
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Chief Economist, Dodge Data & Analytics
Robert Murray is chief economist for Dodge Data & Analytics—a technology-driven construction project data, analytics and insights provider. Dodge provides trusted market intelligence that helps construction professionals grow their business, and is redefining and recreating the business tools and processes on which the industry relies. Dodge is creating an integrated platform that unifies and simplifies the design, bid and build process, bringing data on people, projects and products into a single hub for the entire industry, from building product manufacturers to contractors and specialty trades to architects and engineers.