The value of NYC housing construction starts more than doubled to $1.9 billion in the first half of 2012, hitting a four-year high. In contrast, the value of overall construction starts in the city dropped 16 percent year-over-year, according to a New York Building Congress report released Tuesday.

McGraw-Hill Construction Dodge data shows that there were $6.6 billion worth of starts across all construction for the first six months this year, down from $7.9 billion for the same period in 2011.

Building Congress president Richard Anderson attributed the dip in overall construction to the non-residential sector, which includes commercial office and retail buildings, public and private schools and cultural/entertainment venues. The value of started projects in this sector fell to $3.2 billion in the first half of 2012 after hitting $6.1 billion in the same six months the previous year.

“While there’s no shortage of planned projects, especially in the office sector, we are lacking the type of job growth and confidence in the overall economy that is necessary to get these projects off the ground quickly,” Anderson said in a statement. However, “the numbers coming from the residential sector are very encouraging… If you go back to July of 2011, this sector has generated nearly $4 billion in new projects.”

Four of the ten highest-value project starts were residential, including the Avalon West Chelsea, Baccarat Hotel Residences New York in Midtown, 388 Bridge Street in Downtown Brooklyn and 150 Charles Street in the West Village.

The data covers all project starts in New York City, including new construction, alterations and renovations to existing structures. The numbers reflect the estimated value of each commenced project through the whole construction process.

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