Victorian commercial and apartment builder Probuild has emerged as Australia’s most active non-detached housing construction firm, a new report says.

Released at an industry breakfast in Sydney, the HIA-Core-Logic Construction 100 Report 2016/17 has ranked Australia’s top civil, commercial and multi-residential construction contractors according to the dollar value of new contract work secured throughout the financial year.

Bagging $6.116 billion worth of work, Probuild topped the list followed by Lend Lease, Multiplex, John Holland and CBP Contractors.

Probuild also took out top spot in both the commercial and multi-residential category, whilst the number one spots in other categories were taken out by BMD Group (civil) Macmahon Holdings (Mining), Multiplex (Community) and MSP Engineering (Industrial).

The results signal a shift in focus away from resource related areas toward civil engineering and multi-residential building.

Having fallen off its peak at almost $60 billion in 2012/13, the dollar value of new resource related construction won contracted by a further 10.1 percent in 2016/17 to come in at just $13.1 billion – $4.23 billion of which was generated by the Construction 100 list.

By contrast, civil engineering work ($55.5 billion) was up 6.6 percent whilst multi-residential ($32.0 billion) eased back 1.1 percent but was more than double its level five years earlier.

Going forward, the pipeline of projects looks promising overall as a drop-off in apartment building is offset by greater project flows in areas such as civil engineering and ‘community’ related construction such as schools and hospitals.

All up, the number and dollar value of projects in CoreLogic’s database rose from just over 5,000 to around 6,000 and from around $35 billion to more than $50 billion between June 2016 and June 2017 respectively.

That is despite a nosedive in the number of residential building applications being tracked by CoreLogic from around 27,000 dwellings to just over 15,000 dwellings.

In their report, HIA and CoreLogic say the outlook for non-residential building is reasonably promising.

“Continued modest economic expansion and population growth is likely to strengthen the more market-driven sources of demand for residential and non-residential building from the private sector,” the report says.

“Reasonably steady employment growth and a stable unemployment rate have been a positive for the household sector which should translates into demand for commercial construction.

Early signs are that there will be a solid acceleration of non-residential building activity in during 2017/18, with growth accelerating to 6.4 per cent taking the value of activity to $39.25 billion.

Further growth of 5 per cent during 2018/19 is projected to bring the value of non-residential building to $41.20 billion.”

 largest Australian Construction Company