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Buoyed by Amazon, Single-Family Homes, NKY Construction Mostly Grew in 2020

Construction work continued across Northern Kentucky in 2020, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Building Industry Association of Northern Kentucky (BIANK) released its yearly NKY market report last week.

It showed that residential single-family construction grew 23 percent over 2019, credited to low interest rates.

For the first time since the Great Recession, the region ended 2020 above 1,000 building permits, with a total of 1,140.

Residential remodeling permitted projects grew 8 percent over 2019. These projects represent only permitted projects which include structural or mechanical alterations. The average value of these projects grew by 23 percent, showing that Northern Kentucky homeowners invested more into their home during the pandemic than in the year 2019, BIANK said.

While the volume growth is less impactful than that of residential single-family construction, 2020 permitted remodeling volumes have increased by 50 percent when compared to 2018.

Multi-family residential building slowed in 2020 when compared to 2019. That comes after a year of substantial pullback in multi-family building from 2018. This represents a decline of 38 percent over two years; a reduction mimicking the national trend, BIANK said.

New development of commercial/industrial projects show a permitted value of $568 million, a figure that is 25 percent greater than that of 2019, and a figure that doubles that of 2018.

Commercial/industrial reinvestment also continued to grow in Northern Kentucky in 2020 at a pace 11 percent above 2019, which also shows an improvement of 84 percent of 2020 over 2018.

This means while growth continues for this part of the construction sector in Northern Kentucky, the pace of growth is slowing, BIANK said.

Contributing to expansion in this sector is the Amazon Prime International Air Hub. While total new and reinvestment commercial/industrial projects totaled $910.7 million, the air hub or Amazon operation projects account for 93.5 percent of all projects in this sector.

Without Amazon-related projects, the region would have seen little to no growth for commercial/industrial growth in Northern Kentucky over the last few years.

"We hope that companies continue to position themselves to move to Northern Kentucky and use Amazon’s operations here to move their products to market and lend to the recent growth in this sector of our industry," BIANK said.

-Staff report

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