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Construction Employment Increases in 218 of 358 Metro Areas

Photo courtesy of James Kim Photography + PC Construction
Photo courtesy of James Kim Photography + PC Construction
Photo courtesy of Robby Brown + Sundt Construction
Photo courtesy of Robby Brown + Sundt Construction
Ken Simonson, Chief Economist, AGC
Ken Simonson, Chief Economist, AGC
Jeffrey D. Shoaf, Chief Executive Officer, AGC
Jeffrey D. Shoaf, Chief Executive Officer, AGC
Construction employment rose in 218, or 61 percent, of 358 metro areas between April 2023 and April 2024, according to an analysis by the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) of recently released government employment data.

AGC officials noted that construction employment is growing in fewer metro areas than earlier this year, but said demand remains strong enough in much of the country that many contractors continue to struggle to find enough workers.

“Job gains were less widespread in the latest 12 months than earlier in 2024 as homebuilders and developers throttled back,” said Ken Simonson, AGC’s Chief Economist. “However, with demand surging for data centers, manufacturing and power projects, and infrastructure, there are still more than twice as many areas with job gains as the number of metros that had a decrease in construction employment.”

Employment Increases
Between April 2023 and April 2024, the most construction jobs were added in:
  • Baton Rouge, Louisiana (7,600 jobs or 16 percent)
  • Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, Nevada (6,500 jobs or 8 percent)
  • Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, Georgia (5,700 jobs or 4 percent)
  • Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas (5,100 jobs or 6 percent)

The highest percentage gains occurred in:

  • Fairbanks, Alaska (32 percent or 700 jobs)
  • Detroit-Dearborn-Livonia, Michigan (20 percent or 4,900 jobs)
  • Anchorage, Alaska (20 percent or 1,900 jobs)
  • Lawton, Oklahoma (20 percent or 300 jobs)
Employment Decreases
Construction employment declined over the year in 100 metro areas and was unchanged in 40 areas. The largest job losses occurred in:
  • Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, Colorado (down 5,700 jobs, or 5 percent)
  • New York City (down 5,400 jobs, or 4 percent)
  • Chicago-Naperville-Arlington Heights, Illinois (down 3,900 jobs, or 3 percent)
  • Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, Minnesota-Wisconsin (down 3,800 jobs, or 5 percent)
  • Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, Maryland (down 3,800 jobs, or 5 percent)

The largest percentage decreases occurred in:

  • Augusta-Richmond County, Georgia-South Carolina (down 12 percent, or 2,000 jobs)
  • Columbus, Indiana (down 11 percent, or 200 jobs)
  • Bellingham, Washington (down 10 percent, or 900 jobs)
  • Decatur, Illinois (down 9 percent, or 300 jobs)
Top Worry
AGC officials noted that labor shortages remain the top worry for most construction firms and urged public officials to support more programs that expose current and future workers to construction skills. They also urged Congress and the Biden administration to explore ways to allow more immigrants to lawfully work in the industry as a short-term solution.
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“The more people who are exposed to the opportunities available, and the skills needed, to work in construction careers, the more people who will start earning a good living in this industry,” said Jeffrey D. Shoaf, AGC’s Chief Executive Officer. “Having more workers will boost local economies and allow our nation to build the infrastructure and economic development projects it needs to continue thriving.”

View construction employment data for all 358 metro areas at agc.org.

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