AN 18 PER CENT boost in new public sector work has led a surge in construction output over the past year.
Output for the 12 months to March 2004 rose 7 per cent on 2003, with total volumes of repair maintenance and improvement work up by 8 per cent, driven by the Decent Homes initiative.
Construction Products Association economist Alan Wilen welcomed the increase in public sector workload but warned against overheating the market.
He said: 'The Government has missed its target of reducing non-Decent Homes by a third by last April and is now pushing a lot of work out.
'We have to make sure that we do not overheat the market and slip into boom and bust and also make sure that there are better monitoring systems in place to measure progress.'