We have been covering the fluctuating Architecture Billing Index for several months, anxious to see steady improvement in our economy and our profession’s field. In the month of April, a survey was included in the Billings Index and the AIA recently released the findings. As John Schneidawind reported, almost two-thirds of the surveyed architects reported at least one stalled project due to lack of financing, despite record low interest rates. More after the break.
The survey pointed to the fact that the lack of availability of construction project financing has been detrimental to firms, as 57 percent of survey respondents rated the issue as very or extremely serious, and an additional 30 percent indicated that it is a somewhat serious issue. “This data only serves to reinforce the dire need for lawmakers to act to alleviate a credit crunch that continues to plague one of the economy’s biggest job-creating engines – the design and construction industry,” said AIA President Clark Manus, FAIA. “We are on the front lines of an industry that accounts for $1 in $9 of U.S. Gross Domestic Product, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.” “Congress can clearly move to free up credit by passing legislation that gives the regional banking industry more freedom to lend,” Manus said. “What’s needed on Capitol Hill is action to ensure that as Congress cuts federal spending, it also takes steps to make credit more available.”