Bulldozers and cranes have returned to many neighborhoods of New York, but the number of stalled construction projects continues to grow. A new report counts nearly 700 sites where builders have all the necessary permits, but are not putting shovels in the ground.
New York Building Congress President Richard Anderson says the figure surprises him.
"From an intuitive standpoint, you'd expect construction activity to resume as the economy strengthens," Anderson said. "Somehow, the financing for these projects is not returning yet."
Anderson believes lenders are still wary of financing new commercial or residential buildings, making credit scarce.
From 2009 to 2010, the number of stalled projects increased more than 50 percent, according to an analysis of data from the city's Department of Buildings.
Almost half of all the idle construction sites are in Brooklyn.