• $30m build gap


    THE building industry in Wangaratta is now worth $30 million less than three years ago after the number of houses and commercial buildings constructed in Wangaratta dropped again over the past financial year.

    Figures obtained from the Rural City of Wangaratta reveal a total of $48.4 million was spent on building projects during the 2012/13 financial year, which is down on the $51.2m spent in 2011/12 and $80.4m spent in 2009/10.

    Browns Wangaratta director, Paul Challman, said he was not surprised by the figures as the industry is “as tough as I’ve ever found it”.

    Wangaratta had 26 commercial and industrial building projects worth $5.9m in the 2012/13, compared to 41 projects worth $6.5m the year before.

    Community projects had the only significant rise in the past 12 months – going from $3.9m in 2011/12 to $6m – but three years ago, that category was worth $23.1m.

    Mr Challman said the Federal Government’s “Building the Education Revolution” program in 2009 provided lots of work for building companies and attracted more workers into the industry, but now there is not enough work and too much competition.

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