More People, More Buildings, More Growth


Resurging population growth in Orange County has major implications for the economy, said economist James Doti, president of Chapman University.

Expanding on Chapman’s influential economic forecast at a recent event it sponsored with UCLA and the University of Chicago, Doti said that the increasing population will spur construction, which in turn will fuel economic growth. He sees “a very upbeat and optimistic scenario for the construction industry, given the population growth through the turn of the century.”

But he believes that new building won’t keep pace with the strong demand for both residential and commercial real estate, and that will lead to higher property values. What’s more, he said, the growing popularity of real estate investment trusts as an investment tool bodes well for the local construction market. It will bring more investors into the market, he said. “I think it will have a more pronounced effect in California, particularly Southern California.”



Patrice Apodaca covers economic issues for The Times. She can be reached at (714) 966-5979 and at