COASTS BUILD ON MOMENTUM

COASTS BUILD ON MOMENTUM

QUEENSLAND'S sea-change capitals the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast maintained development momentum in July as building approvals elsewhere across Queensland slipped.

The coasts recorded gains of 27.3 per cent and 44.7 per cent respectively in July from June, while Brisbane saw building approvals slide 33.2 per cent.

Despite the broader monthly slowdown across regional areas, particularly the Darling Downs and North Queensland, the state's building approvals are up 11.3 per cent to 42,403 from a year earlier.

The Sunshine Coast was the standout for July as approvals surged to 463 from 320 over the month, while Gold Coast approvals hit 513, up from 403.

From a yearly perspective, the Sunshine Coast has experienced a 22.3 per cent rise in approvals to 3586, while the Gold Coast is up just 7.6 per cent to 4948.

Brisbane's building approvals are up 29.5 per cent from a year ago to 27,181 with July's 2129 approvals tracking below the monthly average of the past year.

More than half of Queensland's regional centres recorded positive growth over the last 12 months, although Mackay, Whitsunday and Central Queensland have been the hardest hit with a 64.3 per cent and 51.5 per cent slide in approvals respectively over the past year.

Master Builders' deputy executive director Paul Bidwell says despite the negative figures for most regions in July, the longer-term outlook for construction remains strong, particularly for south-east Queensland.

He says building approvals on a seasonally adjusted basis are up 15.6 per cent across Queensland for the year to date.

"We also know the unit approvals were largely responsible for the result in July, dropping by a massive 31.4 per cent," he says.

"While there is a reasonably strong pipeline of work in Queensland, particularly for the residential sector, there is still a lot of scope for the government to provide support in the form of infrastructure spending in regional Queensland."

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