The American Institute of Architects (AIA) billing index fell for the third consecutive year in January 2010, despite a positive outlook in the latter half of 2009.
Architecture billings stood at 42.5 in January, three points behind December when it stood at 45.5. The new project index also saw a fall of seven points to 52.5.
The index is an economic indicator for the construction industry reflecting the nine to 12-month lag between architecture billings and construction.
AIA chief economist Kermit Baker said the decrease in tax revenues for publicly financed projects and declining property values must be resolved to counter the 20% unemployment seen in the design and construction industry, reports contractmagazine.com.