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Alberta Construction Sector Outlook

Posted by: Gavin Au-Yeung Date: July 20, 2020 Category: Blog

The long-term growth of Alberta’s construction industry expects to see modest growth over the next decade (2020 – 2029) according to research reports by BuildForce Canada. The rise of non-residential construction requirements and an acceleration in oil sands investment is driving these changes. In addition, residential construction projects are also expected to increase as well.

Continue reading for more information about the province’s outlook.

Related blog: Saskatchewan Construction Sector Outlook

A Growing Workforce

Over the next decade, BuildForce predicts that an additional 65,000 construction-related jobs will become necessary; this number representations a 12.7 per cent increase in Alberta’s construction workforce. The majority of the hiring demands will be created by the 41,500 workers who will retire during the next ten years. During the same time frame, Alberta expects to see 40,300 new entrants (first-time construction workers who are under 30 years old) join the construction industry. The remaining 23,000-plus workers expected to fill the initial demand of 65,000 will need to come from outside the province’s construction labour force.

Currently, newcomers consist of about 17 per cent of Alberta’s construction force. Furthermore, the province expects to welcome an annual average of 36,000 newcomers over the next decade. Newcomers will certainly be happy to find plenty of career opportunities within Alberta’s growing construction sector.

Alberta Construction Workforce Growth
image via BuildForce Canada

Non-Residential Construction Sector

Expect stable growth from the non-residential construction sector throughout the course of the decade. Major petrochemical projects and oil and gas pipeline expansions will result in this near-term growth. Further growth due to new institutional buildings and oil sands investment are in store after 2023 as well. Ongoing projects for road, highway, and bridge work are also contributing to the demand for workers. As a result, the non-residential construction sector will need to increase employment by 14,700 workers over the next decade. In other words, this increase will bring the non-residential labour force up to 138,078 workers by 2029.

Many jobs in the non-residential construction sector will be in-demand. Some of these jobs include: Boilermakers, Bricklayers, Carpenters, Crane Operators, Welders and Related Machine Operators, and Construction managers.

Residential Construction Sector

Alberta experienced tremendous population growth in recent history. In fact, the province led the country in population growth during the first two quarters in 2019. With 4.3 million people and counting, Alberta’s residential construction sector expects to see a increasing demand for housing projects. Housing starts can expect to recover between 2021 and 2023 after sharp declines the last two years. This moderate growth will result in an addition 8,146 workers added by the end of the decade. The jump represents a 12 per cent increase for the residential construction labour force.

In-Demand residential construction sector jobs include: Homebuilders and Renovation Managers, Concrete Finishers, Painters and Decorators, Roofers and Shinglers, and Residential and Commercial Installers and Servicers.

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