Economy Watch: Hotel Development Still Strong

Hotel planning and construction in the U.S. grew again in May, with more than half a million rooms under contract across nearly 5,000 projects, according to a recent STR report.

Courtesy Flickr Creative Commons user SqueakyMarmot

The U.S. hotel industry, which has been having a string of very strong years in terms of earnings and occupancy, is also still developing new properties at a strong clip. According to STR’s May 2017 Pipeline Report, which was released this week, some 580,068 rooms in 4,806 hotel projects are under contract in the United States. The total represents a 13.8 percent increase in the number of rooms under contract compared with May 2016.

According to STR, “under contract” includes projects actually under construction, as well as those in the final planning stages, but not projects that are still unconfirmed. The report also found that 191,832 rooms in 1,477 projects are under construction nationwide. That’s a 16.4 percent increase year-over-year.

Among the top markets for hotels, New York City reported the most rooms under contract (27,806 rooms) and most rooms under construction (15,473 rooms). Three additional markets each reported more than 15,000 rooms under contract for the month: Dallas (18,386 rooms); Houston (16,613 rooms); and Los Angeles/Long Beach (15,663 rooms).

After New York, four other markets reported more than 5,000 rooms under construction, reported STR: Dallas (7,503 rooms); Los Angeles/Long Beach (5,887 rooms); Nashville (5,335 rooms); and Seattle (5,325 rooms).

Image courtesy Flickr Creative Commons user SqueakyMarmot