5 Construction Technology Trends to Watch for in 2018
Are you interested in the latest and greatest innovations for construction? Maybe you just want to stay informed of construction technology trends so you can see how the new tech can improve your business. Whatever the reasons may be, you’re in the right place. Here are 5 construction technology trends!
Construction technology is big business. Construction technology companies gathered $10 billion in investments between 2011 and 2017. The construction industry is finally becoming digitized.
There’s still a long way to go, though. Construction is the second-least digitized sector in the economy. Investing in digitization could add $1.6 trillion to the construction industry, annually.
Many entrepreneurs and innovative tech start-ups are taking advantage of this opportunity.. These are the top construction technology trends of 2018 to keep an eye on.
The Top 5 Construction Technology Trends Of 2018
For years, the top construction technology trends revolved around software solutions. We’ve finally broken out of that box. We’re seeing innovative products hit the market along with the apps.
Many of the construction industry technology trends are being driven by need. The world continues to shift and evolve. The construction industry continues to adapt.
These are the future trends in construction that will shape the world we live in and how we build it.
Resiliency Is Going To Be Important
The flood of natural disasters in 2017 put resiliency on the radar. Property owners received over $400 billion in damages due to hurricanes, wildfires, and flooding.
Property owners are taking the opportunity to improve on the original structures.
This is is keeping with new construction standards from the United States Green Building Council. The USGBC adopted the RELi standard that offers incentivizes resilient rebuilding.
Concrete is strong, sturdy stuff, but it’s brittle and unwieldy. It also deteriorates over time. It cracks as it dries out. Eventually, it crumbles to dust.
Researchers from Rutger and Binghamton Universities are solving this dilemma. They’re doing so in a highly unexpected way.
The research teams found that injecting a certain fungus into concrete’s lifespan. The research is still fresh but it seems we’re on our way to self-healing concrete.
Off-Site Construction Is Still Important
Off-site fabrication and delivery was a big construction trend of 2017. Off-site fabrication companies Katerra and FullStack both received $10 million in funding. Numerous construction companies have already partnered with prefab providers.
Industry challenges will continue to drive this push towards off-site construction. Contractors are seeking solutions to make the building process more efficient. They are turning to off-site construction facilities in their search for optimization.
Currently, many of off-site fabrication’s applications are integrated into traditional building methods. We’re seeing hybrid setups now but things only stand to accelerate as the delivery methods become more established.
Suppliers are starting to increase their production in anticipation of this emerging sector. Off-site production suppliers like Tremco are already creating dedicated programs for this sector.
The greatest sign of this rising trend is Marriott International. They plan to add 7 manufacturing plants to their inventory. They will be developing a strategy to measure this building method against on-site construction, as well.
Public Transportation Is On The Rise
Infrastructure has been getting a lot of attention recently. Former Transportation Secretary Anthony R. Foxx has talked about the state of infrastructure.
The focus is shifting to smaller systems and localized transportation. The United States Department Of Transportation is starting to think holistically. We can’t look at modes of transportation as separate an distinct anymore,” according to Foxx. “It’s all one whole.”
Nashville, TN is one city making major investments in their infrastructure. Nashville’s voting on a $5.2 billion infrastructure upgrade. This upgrade wouldn’t just focus on Nashville, either. The plan accounts to connect the inner city with surrounding communities in Davidson County.
Minneapolis, MN is making similar renovations. They’re proposing a $1.9 billion light rail. The light rail project has been experiencing some delays due to budgeting but officials are optimistic about starting work in 2018.
Boston, MA’s green light rail is getting a similar update. Boston are adding $2.2 billion to their light rail budget. This increase will add 4.7 miles and seven stations to the public transportation system between Medford, MA and Cambridge.
Existing public transportation isn’t the only sector that’s getting an update, either. Infrastructure is finally entering the future. High-speed maglev trains and hyperloop systems are being investigated.
Several proposals for maglev train systems have already been accepted. These include Maryland and California.
Automation is one of the most talked about construction trends, for obvious reasons. At a talk at Autodesk University, CEO Andrew Anagnost addressed the topic directly. “Instead of worrying about automation taking our jobs, let’s have a conversation about where automation can take us.”
Automation is making major waves in every sector of the construction industry. Consider 3d printing. In the final months of 2017, a company in Denmark printed the first 3d printed building.
A company from the Netherlands did something similar by 3d printing a concrete bridge. A California construction tech firm has been granted rights for 3d printing concrete turbine towers.
Automated machines are starting to take on jobs that are dangerous for humans. The remotely-operated RoboMiner is being designed to go into pit mines instead of human miners.
A construction firm in Pittsburgh, PA is using robots to tie on rebar to form bridge decks. This cuts the amount of labor time in half, compared to human labor. It’s also greatly reducing the amount of injuries on the job site.
Construction tech trends were named the Trend Of The Year at the Construction Dive Awards in 2017. It accounted for $433 million in investments in the first 9 months of 2017 alone. Two of the 56 total deals were for more than $50 million each.
One of these $50 million deals was also named the Innovator Of The Year. Katerra uses factory-based automation to standardize factory construction and design. Their aim is to eliminate handoffs and reduce down-time.
Construction tech trends are only going to rise in coming years. Tech trends are disrupting and revolutionizing every industry, including construction. Investing in construction tech now will help your construction firm stay ahead of the curve for maximum efficiency.
Looking To Integrate Tech Into Your Construction Company?
Construction technology trends indicate the construction industry is only going to become more technological. New digital tools are hitting the market each and every day to make your workflow more streamlined and efficient.
If you’re going to be integrating construction tech into your on-site building projects, check out pricing on mobile offices. They’ll serve as the nervous system of your new smart building workflow.