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Housing will bolster Alberta construction

March 2, 2018

Residential construction and renovation will act as a brake on the decline in Alberta construction work this year, according to BuildForce Canada.
As major projects wind down and the impact of lower oil prices persist, Alberta’s construction industry will shrink by up to 5,200 jobs through to 2019, it said in recent study.
“Labour markets are shifting and new job opportunities are opening up,” said Bill Ferreira, executive director of BuildForce Canada. “Job growth in new home and renovation work and seasonal shutdown/turnaround and maintenance work is expected to help offset some short-term employment losses.”
BuildForce Canada is a national industry-led organization that represents all sectors of Canada’s construction industry.
BuildForce Canada’s 2018–2027 Construction and Maintenance Looking Forward says Alberta’s residential construction growth should resume in 2019 and again in 2024 with a renewal in oil and gas investment.
Total construction employment is expected to decline this year, though, before broader growth resumes later in the scenario period.
Growth in new residential and renovation work should add 4,500 jobs (6 per cent increase) this year—restoring residential construction employment to 2014 levels by 2021.
But it may remain difficult to find enough workers.
“The need to replace the province’s aging construction workforce is a constant,” Ferreira cautioned. “This requires proactive planning and steady recruitment and training throughout construction’s up- and down-cycles.”


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