The construction sector in the UK and Poland will show most improvement in the forthcoming 2.5 years, followed by Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium. These are some of the conclusions of the Q2 2014 European Architectural Barometer report, a quarterly research project among 1,600 architects in eight European countries.
,According to Arch-Vision, who conducted the report, one of the reasons for the British improvement is that building permits for non-residential buildings have increased again the last two quarters. The building permits for residential buildings show an even bigger increase (27% more building permits in Q1 2014 than in 2010). Other indicators are showing positive signs; the sentiment within architectural firms is described as ‘positive’ in Q2 2014: they show strong order books and turnover development (39% of the companies reported an increase of more than 5% in their order books in Q2 2014 and 23% saw an increase of up to 5%).
,However, Arch-Vision warns that we should not be ‘too euphoric’: the last two quarters clearly show more architects than in the previous quarters who expect an empty order book in the next 12 months (37% and 40% as opposed to 27% and 21% in the prior two quarters). Arch-Vision nevertheless predicts a market growth of 4% in 2014, which will continue in 2015 (4%) and 2016 (3%).
,The European Architectural Barometer study is conducted in Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the UK, the Netherlands, Belgium and Poland by Arch-Vision four times a year. According to Arch-Vision, architects can be used not only as a reliable source for future building volumes information, but their role is very important as they have great influence on how projects are built and which materials are used.
,The architects’ sentiment continues to be negative for Italy, Spain and France, where the construction sector is expected to decline in 2014 and 2015. While Spain is predicted to recover in 2016, the other two countries ‘will need an additional year’ according to Arch-Vision.