The Dodge Momentum Index rose 6.3 percent in February, according to McGraw-Hill Construction, a division of The McGraw-Hill Companies. The Momentum Index is a monthly measure of the first (or initial) report for nonresidential building projects in planning, which have been shown to lead construction spending for nonresidential buildings by a full year. February’s strong gain brought the index to 102.9 (2000=100), 23.4 percent higher than a year earlier. The increase was the third consecutive monthly gain and the first time the index has surpassed the 100 mark since 2010.

McGraw-Hill also reports that the index is now at its highest level since April of 2010, “suggesting that the recovery for nonresidential building may be finally gaining some traction.”

The latest report from McGraw-Hill attributes the February increase for the Momentum Index to an 11.9-percent surge in commercial projects “driven primarily by robust gains for new office and store projects.”