While the potential for trillions of dollars of new infrastructure spending looms on the horizon, America’s construction industry is struggling to even keep pace with current demand for new homes, businesses, roads, and bridges. A shortage of supplies and employees has created ongoing challenges for construction firms and their customers.
While the construction labor shortage has been exacerbated by recent economic conditions, it is a trend that predates the COVID-19 pandemic. The longer-term issue stems from a decades-long decline in trade education and a lack of interest among younger workers, many of whom perceive employment in the construction industry as a last resort.
Despite short- and long-term labor shortages at the national level, states where population growth has been hottest are also where construction hiring has boomed in recent years. From 2015 to 2020, the Bureau of Labor Statistics recorded about 35% growth in construction employment in Idaho and Nevada, as well as about 30% growth in Florida, Arizona, Oregon, and North Carolina. In contrast, states in the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest regions have seen construction jobs stagnate or even decline over the past five years.
In Virginia, 9,250 construction jobs have been added in the last 5 years, a 5.9% increase in construction employment. This is 2.5 points below the national average for the entire United States.
For more information, a detailed methodology, and complete results, you can find the original report on Construction Coverage’s website: https://constructioncoverage.com/research/cities-with-biggest-increase-in-construction-jobs-2021