Construction is routinely looked to as a marker for the economic health of a city or region. Our Real Estate Regional Crane Surveys highlight this link between development and prosperity, examining the external influences and key market drivers of city centre construction.
Ready to accelerate?
Development continued in Belfast in 2019 – a year in which Northern Ireland featured heavily in the EU Exit negotiations, and during which the region operated without a functioning Assembly and Executive. Twelve new starts were recorded in 2019, however there were fewer developments under construction or completed compared to previous years. Despite this slowdown in activity the city continues to show resilience and with the fresh injection of political leadership there is potential to accelerate regeneration and investment in the city.
Carry on building
Birmingham saw 11 major new developments commencing within the city centre in 2019. Whilst there is evidently a huge amount of construction activity ongoing around the city this figure is significantly below the two previous years. Most of these new starts are large scale residential schemes and four are offices. Only time will determine whether 2019 was just a blip in development activity or something more permanent. Developers however were not deterred and throughout the year they carried on building.
Despite a climate of economic uncertainty in 2019, Leeds has seen record breaking delivery in the number of units under construction in the residential and student accommodation sectors. City Centre living continues to develop at pace in Leeds and with a number of notable schemes in the pipeline this trend is expected to continue in 2020.
Following a record breaking year in 2018, Manchester has seen a slight reduction in new starts in 2019. Despite this levelling out, this year’s results show 27 schemes completing making 2019 the third highest year on record. Given the geo-political uncertainty experienced in recent times, this is a further testament to the city’s market strength.