In 2020, the global pandemic caused major disruption to our everyday life and work. For the construction industry, trends like the rise of teleworking, requirements for social distancing, shifts of resources, breaks in supply chains, and cash flow disruption changed at every level. Here are some of the top construction trends we see in the pipeline for 2021.
Top 4 Construction Trends
Safety is always a top concern, but in the environment of the pandemic, it has increased. Adjustments to mitigate the spread of disease will focus on the separation of workers and enhanced equipment and cleanliness protocols.
The separation of workers is a difficult thing to achieve on a jobsite. This is due to teamwork and cooperation being key to the job. For 2021, we will likely see smaller teams and the use of staggered shifts become one of the year’s construction trends to keep job sites less crowded.
2. Living Materials
One of the most forward-thinking construction trends to watch, is the development of living materials. Living Materials are biological compounds that grow themselves. These materials are looking to move from the experimental stage to full-scale production in the near future. The benefits of these new biological materials are too great for these materials to not move into production.
Of all the biological materials, the most promising are made of bacteria and fungi. This combination makes the material light, strong and portable.
Self-mending concrete is also on the horizon. This concrete is saturated with bacteria that binds materials around it into new structural material. This material can grow in the pores of concrete, adding to its impermeability. It can even grow into fissures and cracks, filling and repairing them.
In addition, there is also Mycelium Composites. Instead of bacteria, these materials are made from fungi. Mycelium is the vast network of fungi living underground, the flowers of which are mushrooms. Scientists have harvested this fungus, growing it into all sorts of materials by feeding it farm waste.
3. Remote Technology
One of the biggest construction trends, almost no commercial job site at the moment is without a Drone.
Construction is the fastest growing adopter of commercial drones according to DroneDeploy (a drone surveying and mapping app). By looking down at a project from above, contractors are able to find new and different information. For example, safety issues are quickly discovered and quantities of materials on site can be accurately estimated. Maps can also be created, making even the largest job site visible as a whole.
This means that substantial financial savings are achievable as a result. Safety information can reduce insurance claims, as well as help to accurately assess materials and progress. This can lead to more timely information for Pay Requests and can help make adjustments to manpower and scheduling to avoid delays.
4. 3-D Printing
3-D printing is a game-changer in all industries, not just construction. It is essentially a big nozzle that methodically lays concrete in vertical piles according to a programmed design.
This method is already in commercial use around the world and is expected to grow at a rapid pace and become one of the main construction trends. Most recently, a 3D home building company raised $35m after printing an entire neighbourhood in Mexico.
3-D printing is also used at a smaller scale within factories. This process is used to make small components of larger assemblies. 3-D printing will likely never replace injection moulding for mass production. However, 3-D printing is making some of the manufacturing of custom pieces more affordable.
Industries are forever changing, and if there’s one thing the pandemic has taught us it’s that we can create and use better and more efficient ways to do our jobs. At MP Building & Groundworks we pride ourselves on the high-quality services that we provide. They continue to improve and we always try to keep up with construction trends and industry innovations. If you have any question about our services, please don’t hesitate to get in touch and we would be more than happy to help you with your project.