33rd Annual Official Education Construction Report

33rd Annual Official Education Construction Report

Construction spending by education institutions topped $36 billion in 2006.

Construction spending by education institutions topped $36 billion in 2006. While strong by historical standards, it represents the third consecutive year that total spending on construction dropped from the year before.

According to American School & University's 33rd annual Official Education Construction Report, total spending on new, addition and retrofit construction by America's school districts and higher-education institutions slowed to $36.6 billion in 2006 from $37.5 billion the year before. While the need for construction continues to be strong, many institutions delayed, reduced in scope, or postponed construction activity because of rapidly rising costs and unforeseen market conditions.

Much of the drop in 2006 can be attributed to higher education, as construction spending by colleges and universities dipped to $11.3 billion from $14.5 billion the year before. School districts increased spending on construction to $25.3 billion in 2006, compared with $23 billion put in place in 2005.

What follows is the authoritative source for education construction data, detailing spending by type of institution; projected spending through 2009; regional spending; per-square-foot and per-student costs; and much more — providing you with benchmark information as you plan future projects.

Survey methodology

To arrive at results for the 33rd annual Official Education Construction Report, a detailed questionnaire was sent to chief business officials at the nation's school districts and colleges, asking about construction completed during the past year and construction planned to be completed in the next three years.

Administrators answering “yes” to either question then were asked to provide a variety of details on the amount being spent, the type of construction being done (new, addition or modernization), and the expected completion date. All respondents involved with new and retrofit construction were asked to provide additional information on each project. Further follow-up correspondence was made to clarify some data. Responses were separated by institution type, region of the country and institution size, and projected across the education universe.

Education construction completed in 2006 ($000s)

 
The National Picture
SCHOOL DISTRICTS
$13,696,179 New
$3,293,625 Additions
$8,335,650 Modernizations
$25,325,454 TOTAL
COLLEGES
$5,335,208 New
$1,542,236 Additions
$4,428,058 Modernizations
$11,305,502 TOTAL
ALL EDUCATION
$19,031,387 New
$4,835,861 Additions
$12,763,708 Modernizations
$36,630,956 TOTAL

Education construction projected to be completed in 2007-2009 ($000s)

The National Picture
SCHOOL DISTRICTS
$26,185,765 New
$8,552,855 Additions
$16,629,743 Modernizations
$51,368,363 TOTAL
COLLEGES
$27,349,914 New
$5,008,517 Additions
$13,152,937 Modernizations
$45,511,368 TOTAL
ALL EDUCATION
$53,535,679 New
$13,561,372 Additions
$29,782,680 Modernizations
$96,879,731 TOTAL

Education construction: A decade of data

 
($ Billions) 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006
School Districts $12.394 $17.095 $16.039 $21.567 $26.777 $24.343 $28.638 $29.088 $22.962 $25.325
Colleges $7.530 $7.330 $13.964 $14.703 $14.732 $16.205 $19.469 $12.186 $14.561 $11.306
All Education $19.924 $24.425 $30.003 $36.270 $41.509 $40.548 $48.107 $41.274 $37.523 $36.631
New Construction $10.471 $12.097 $14.431 $19.139 $20.112 $22.505 $31.596 $20.656 $21.220 $19.031
Additions $4.249 $6.160 $7.043 $4.936 $5.814 $8.014 $6.176 $7.124 $8.884 $4.836
Modernizations $5.204 $6.168 $8.529 $12.195 $15.583 $10.029 $10.335 $13.494 $7.419 $12.764

Education construction, 2006: By type of institution ($000)

 
Region Schools Colleges All Education
1 $2,473,372 $696,276 $3,169,648
2 $1,035,557 $527,850 $1,563,407
3 $744,142 $955,866 $1,700,008
4 $1,768,183 $1,747,357 $3,515,540
5 $5,040,404 $991,631 $6,032,035
6 $3,045,052 $3,649,519 $6,694,571
7 $2,032,800 $550,126 $2,582,926
8 $6,423,002 $565,493 $6,988,495
9 $2,762,942 $1,621,384 $4,384,326
Nat'l $25,325,454 $11,305,502 $36,630,956

School construction, 2006: By type of construction ($000)

 
  Total dollars spent % of dollars spent
Region New Bldgs Adds/Mods New Bldgs Adds/Mods
1 $1,589,575 $883,797 64.3% 35.7%
2 $738,561 $296,996 71.3% 28.7%
3 $527,100 $217,042 70.8% 29.2%
4 $800,525 $967,658 45.3% 54.7%
5 $2,098,625 $2,941,779 41.6% 58.4%
6 $2,325,314 $719,738 76.4% 23.6%
7 $629,137 $1,403,663 30.9% 69.1%
8 $3,269,184 $3,153,818 50.9% 49.1%
9 $1,718,158 $1,044,784 62.2% 37.8%
Nat'l $13,696,179 $11,629,275 54.1% 45.9%

College construction, 2006: By type of construction ($000)

 
  Total dollars spent % of dollars spent
Region New Bldgs Adds/Mods New Bldgs Adds/Mods
1 $535,756 $160,520 76.9% 23.1%
2 $216,491 $311,359 41.0% 59.0%
3 $397,146 $558,720 41.5% 58.5%
4 $833,835 $913,522 47.7% 52.3%
5 $556,363 $435,268 56.1% 43.9%
6 $1,645,781 $2,003,738 45.1% 54.9%
7 $302,178 $247,948 54.9% 45.1%
8 $364,505 $200,988 64.5% 35.5%
9 $483,153 $1,138,231 29.8% 70.2%
Nat'l $5,335,208 $5,970,294 47.2% 52.8%

Education construction projected to be completed, 2007-2009
($000)

 
The Regional Picture
Region Schools Colleges Total
1 $2,186,048 $1,344,192 $3,530,240
2 $1,906,784 $5,481,672 $7,388,456
3 $1,455,000 $3,836,423 $5,291,423
4 $3,276,348 $10,602,900 $13,879,248
5 $13,013,431 $4,753,844 $17,767,275
6 $10,319,109 $8,473,047 $18,792,156
7 $1,476,795 $2,375,902 $3,852,697
8 $7,491,429 $3,735,546 $11,226,975
9 $10,243,419 $4,907,842 $15,151,261
Nat'l $51,368,363 $45,511,368 $96,879,731

How the school construction dollars are projected to be split, 2007-2009

 
Total School Construction ($000)
Region New Adds/Mods % New % Adds/Mods
1 $1,895,715 $290,333 86.7% 13.3%
2 $1,085,594 $821,190 56.9% 33.1%
3 $1,026,000 $429,000 70.5% 29.5%
4 $698,638 $2,577,710 21.3% 78.7%
5 $7,514,308 $5,499,123 57.7% 42.3%
6 $6,736,994 $3,582,115 65.3% 34.7%
7 $927,359 $549,436 62.8% 37.2%
8 $4,994,286 $2,497,143 66.7% 33.3%
9 $1,306,871 $8,936,548 12.8% 87.2%
Nat'l $26,185,765 $25,182,598 51.0% 49.0%

How the college construction dollars are projected to be split, 2007-2009

 
Total College Construction ($000)
Region New Adds/Mods % New % Adds/Mods
1 $201,538 $1,142,654 15.0% 85.0%
2 $3,900,937 $1,580,735 71.2% 28.8%
3 $2,102,475 $1,733,948 54.8% 45.2%
4 $7,529,760 $3,073,140 71.0% 29.0%
5 $2,352,918 $2,400,926 49.5% 50.5%
6 $3,795,556 $4,677,491 44.8% 55.2%
7 $1,299,625 $1,076,277 54.7% 45.3%
8 $2,774,105 $961,441 74.3% 25.7%
9 $3,393,000 $1,514,842 69.1% 30.9%
Nat'l $27,349,914 $18,161,454 60.1% 39.9%

New school costs (Median)

 
  Elementary Middle High
Cost/Square Foot $137 $110 $169
Cost/Student $16,010 $21,684 $30,000
Square Feet/Student 117 197 178
Number 600 800 1,000
Size (sq. ft.) 70,000 157,380 177,500
Total Cost ($000) $9,606 $17,347 $30,000

School Data

5,381

Mean number of students at responding school districts.

43

Percentage of school districts completing some form of construction project in 2006.

39

Percentage of school districts planning a construction project to be completed by 2009.

20

Amount, in $millions, the median new school district construction project completed by 2009 is expected to cost.

College Data

6,910

 

Mean number of FTE students at responding colleges and universities.

72

 

Percentage of colleges and universities completing some form of construction project in 2006.

70

Percentage of colleges and universities planning a construction project to be completed by 2009.

$19

Amount, in millions, the median new college and university construction project completed by 2009 is expected to cost.

The ultimate resource

As the bellwether report documenting education construction activity for the past 33 years, the American School & University Official Education Construction Report is regularly referenced by local, state and federal agencies, as well as the nation's leading news organizations. AS&U actually started compiling data on school and university construction in 1950 for the 1949 year. After a decade or so of yearly surveys, data began being compiled sporadically until industry demand prompted AS&U to start collecting data annually again. The annual reports resurfaced in 1975 with information on education construction completed in 1974, and data has been collected and published every year since. American School & University is the only authorized source of this education construction information.

Agron is editor in chief of AS&U.

TAGS: Construction
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