The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported that architecture firm billings rose for the sixth consecutive month in March, although the pace of growth slowed modestly from February.

Overall, the AIA’s Architecture Billings Index (ABI) score for March was 51.0 (any score over 50 indicates billings growth), which still reflects a healthy business environment. While business conditions softened somewhat at firms located in the Northeast region, billings remained strong at firms located in the South and West regions.

“New project activity coming into architecture firms continues to grow at a solid pace. As a result, project backlogs—in excess of six months at present— are at their highest post-recession level,” says AIA chief economist Kermit Baker. “Business remains strong in the South and West, and firms with a residential specialization continue to set the pace.”

Key March ABI highlights:

Regional averages: West (53.4), Midwest (50.7), South (53.2), Northeast (49.0)

Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (53.4), institutional (49.7), commercial/industrial (53.1), mixed practice (51.1)

Project inquires index: 58.1

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