Kansas City area construction slows in October

Residential construction in metropolitan Kansas City dropped 7 percent in October compared to the same month a year ago, the first monthly decline of the year in that category, according to a national report.

There was $108 million in residential construction contracts issued last month, down 7 percent from October 2012, according to McGraw-Hill Construction, a national trade publication. There was $85.4 million in nonresidential contracts issued in the area, off 29 percent from the same month a year ago.

Nonresidential construction has dragged throughout the year in Kansas City compared to a year ago, but until October that decline had been more than compensated by a healthy rebound in residential work.

Despite the October monthly decline, overall construction activity in Kansas City continued to be ahead of last year’s pace through the first 10 months. There was $2.4 billion in total building activity, up 7 percent. Residential construction was up 32 percent with $1.3 billion in contracts, and nonresidential was down 15 percent with $1 billion.

McGraw-Hill defines residential construction as single-family and multifamily housing. Nonresidential includes offices, retail space, hotels, warehouses, manufacturing structures, government space and other buildings.