The construction industry has been evolving for the past few years due to technology trends and advancements such as 3D printing. Developments like a semi-automated mason (SAM) robot helps bricklayers do a better job and do it much faster. Bricks can be laid in intricate patterns and the whole thing is programmed using software developed by Fologram and VR headsets with Microsoft Hololens.
New Building Technology Trends
Emerging technology trends like this are revolutionizing the industry but it is also having other impacts less notable. While many of these advancements do make construction easier and more efficient, they also add to overall costs. There are 5 other factors like this that may likely influence construction work as we move into the future.
- Increases in the Use of Prefabrication
Prefabrication has become a lot more popular because it’s faster. There are a few other benefits as well. When whole walls can be built off-site and brought in by truck, they’re much easier to assemble. A crew can be putting walls, roofs and such together at an off-site location while another crew at the site installs the sub-floor and flooring. This process is cost-effective and it shaves weeks or months off the building timeline.
- Integration of Technology
As mentioned above, technological trends like 3D printing and virtual reality are adding a whole new side to the construction industry. And there doesn’t seem to be a downside except for training older construction workers in these new trends. Drones have become common at a construction site. They make it possible to examine hard-to-get-to areas while not putting anyone’s safety at risk. Self-driving vehicles have also become more popular for similar reasons. Mobile and cloud applications work together to make many of these new technologies a reality. As the industry continues to evolve, more construction workers will need to be trained in the use of these advancements. Getting workers to accept them is another story.
- Improved Safety Procedures
Construction remains one of the more dangerous jobs. Any site has numerous heavy machines moving about, along with dozens of busy workers who may not be paying attention. Add to that partially completed walls, flooring and ceilings and you’ve got a hotbed for accidents on the job. Some areas have been slow to adopt better safety procedures. Reasons for this vary from the cost to employee training. Most big jobs are under a time and budget crunch so the supervisors may not take the time to speak to workers about on-the-job safety. However, as the number of accidents increases each year, the need for better safety techniques becomes much more apparent. Accidents cost time and money and can set a project back. It’s cheaper to simply train workers on each new project. We should see trends toward stronger safety measures.s
- Rising Material Costs
Building materials are getting much better in terms of strength and sustainability. But all this costs extra. Though it does help the environment to use sustainable products like bamboo, recycled steel, and precast concrete, some of these materials can be harder to source. Though it’s still important to find the best materials for the job, focusing on ecological trends like living walls that provide an area with fresh oxygen offers many advantages. Eco-friendly building materials are the wave of the future, but they do often add money to the budget. Do we want to use the cheapest materials or do we want to save our planet? Expect to see more trends toward saving the planet.
- Project Management Software
Construction has fully embraced the use of project management software. It offers numerous benefits such as streamlining many of the duties and helping everyone understand their role throughout the project. These trends help laborers work more efficiently and it helps supervisors understand where each project is throughout the building process. People are held accountable to complete certain tasks within a specific time frame. This enables everyone to enjoy a smoother running project that’s transparent. No confusion and chaos will decrease the number of accidents as well.