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Focus - Continued healthy growth

image Jane Feigenbaum, Chief Executive Officer, Metropolitan Contracting Company, San Antonio, TX

AUSTIN - As Chief Executive Officer of Metropolitan Contracting Company, Feigenbaum brings over 25 years of construction experience. She is responsible for strategic planning, employee and leadership development, operations, and profitability. She oversees all hiring/recruitment decisions, project selection and ensures that client expectations are being satisfied and all projects are completed safely and in a timely manner.

 

    Feigenbaum leads her team of project managers and strives to help clients understand each phase of the development and construction process. In this role, she serves as a communicator and educator whose honesty and integrity frequently result in long-term relationships with repeat clients.

How would you describe the state of the construction industry in general terms?

    The construction industry is continuing to see healthy growth through 2019.  We are seeing new projects in every market type and they are located throughout the San Antonio region.

In your perspective, what is your projection for 2019?

    It appears that the market will maintain a steady growth throughout 2019. The specific construction types we expect to see more significant growth within are industrial, medical and office.

What will be some significant challenges for the construction industry in 2019?

    The labor market continues to tighten and will only be more challenging with continued growth in the construction industry.  We do not see any relief to the labor shortage in the near future.

What is your projection concerning the cost and/or supply of materials?

    We are not aware of any sharp increases in material prices, and if that’s the case, it shouldn’t affect construction cost significantly. 

How will recent steel tariffs affect the construction industry in 2019?
    The recent tariffs placed on steel initially had a large impact on the cost of steel but, since they were first announced, we’ve seen the prices level out. We expect prices to remain fairly level with normal price increases in 2019.

What is your projection for construction industry employment?
    The U.S. as a whole has a low unemployment rate causing a tighter labor market, and the construction industry is no exception to this. As the current generation is entering the labor force, fewer than ever are choosing the skilled tradesperson route. As long as the overall unemployment rate remains low and fewer new workers enter into the construction market, we will continue to see difficulty in employment.  

Will we see a change in the number of available workers and/or available jobs?
    There is a growing recognition for the need for new skilled workers. There are an increasing number of training programs for various skilled trades, some even in-house at companies. There has also been a rise in the number of scholarships associated with skilled trades. There are lots of smart kids who don’t choose to go to college and the construction industry needs them.  There are great opportunities in the construction industry for smart hard workers and it’s important that the industry gets that message out to high school kids.
    Metropolitan Contracting Company is a full-service general contractor with over 30 years experience in San Antonio, TX. -cmw


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