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Report: Arizona construction forecasts bring positive outlook for 2016

(AP Photo)

PHOENIX — Construction hiring and business forecasts are looking good for Arizona in 2016, according to a new report from the Associated General Contractors of America.

“Overwhelmingly, contractors expect to add to their workforce in 2016,” Ken Simonson, chief economist for Associated General Contractors of America, said.

Simonson said five out of six Arizona firms will be adding workers this year and no firm said they would be reducing their workforce.

“That’s even higher than the national percentage,” he said.

The market looks strongest in Arizona for highway construction, followed by water and sewer projects, hospitals and private office construction. Simonson said more than half of the contractors expect a higher volume of work available to bid on this year.

“The weakest market both nationally and in Arizona was for federally funded work on things like Veterans administration or military facilities, or public lands,” he said.

Simonson thinks manufacturing and warehouse markets are going to cool off and new hotel markets are possible this upcoming year.

“I think that the multi-family market is going to do very well,” he said. “Hospital and educational markets have started to come back.”

The 2016 Construction Hiring and Business Outlook is based on responses from 1,500 Associated General Contractors of America firms across the country.

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