If you’re worried about a crashing building market, don’t
Construction work ground to a halt this week creating financial uncertainty from many across the industry

The challenges faced by Strongbuild placed in voluntary administration on Thursday are not an indication of a looming industry crash, according to construction sector data.

The latest Rider Levett Bucknell International report for Q4 2018, for example, predicts that Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide in particular will continue to experience strong demand for building services.

In Adelaide, activity is particularly strong thanks to publicly-funded building projects and civil infrastructure projects, while in Melbourne infrastructure projects are seeing engineering construction booming.

There is some slow-down predicted for multi-residential construction in Brisbane and Melbourne, but in Brisbane, there is a number of large urban renewal projects including Queens Wharf expected to generate solid activity.

In Sydney, the RLB data predicts only a slight decline of the Tender Price Increase rate for 2019 as a minor slow-down in residential activity reduces the recent upwards pressure on demand-driven trade subcontractor prices.

RLB’s Q3 Crane Index report also points to a healthy activity level, with a record 735 long-term construction cranes on sites around the country.

The civil and non-residential sectors saw particularly strong growth in the number of cranes on-site.

This week’s Australian Construction Industry Forum forecast also paints a reassuring picture for the industry.

Overall, building and construction work activity grew to $247 billion over the 2017-18 financial year, and there are no signs of a sudden nosedive ahead.

“The outlook for the next few years is finely balanced,” Bob Richardson, chair of ACIF’s Construction Forecasting Council said.

“We expect the roll out of major infrastructure projects in railways, roads, electricity, water and sewerage to continue.”

At the same time heavy construction and mining work is predicted to continue to slow.

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