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London world’s fifth most expensive city for construction, says survey

A photograph of the Tower of London with newly-constructed buildings in the background

London is the world’s fifth most expensive city for construction, according to a new report

LONDON is the world’s fifth most expensive city for construction – despite the slump of the pound – according to a new survey from Turner & Townsend.

The company looked at 43 regions and cities in its annual report and placed the capital in fifth place, down from last year when it was in third place, reports Building Products magazine. Click here to see the story.

The magazine’s article says: “The news is perhaps surprising, given the decline in the value of the pound since Brexit. However, London is only overtaken by New York, San Francisco, Zurich, and Hong Kong when it comes to commercial and residential construction.”

According to the new survey, construction in London costs $3,214 per m².

The article states that demand for infrastructure work and labour shortages is set to push this figure up by a further 4.1 percent in 2017.

New York is the most expensive

New York was found to be the most expensive for construction coming in at $3,807 per m², while San Francisco was in second place at just over $3,549 per m². Zurich and Hong Kong reached $3,527.87 and $3,487.82 per m², respectively.

The magazine states that the growing skills shortage pushed the global cost of construction inflation to 3.7 percent in 2016. This was an increase from 2.9 percent seen in 2015.

‘Skills shortage is a global issue’

The article states: “The skills shortage remains a global issue, not just a UK one, with only four cities (Muscat, Perth, Santiago and Sao Paulo) reporting a surplus of workers.”

Steve McGuckin, global managing director for real estate, told Building Products magazine: “It is clear that construction is not doing nearly enough to tackle this issue, which if not addressed has the potential to become a crisis.”

The SCS Group is well aware of the construction skills crisis and has been publicising the need to try and attract more young people and women into construction.

Our Regional Manager for London and South East, Faye Young, recently wrote an article about this very subject and talked about how people might not realise how many diverse and interesting roles there are in the construction industry. You can read Faye’s article here.