2020 and 2021 were undeniably tough years for the construction industry. The cash flow and supply chain disruptions caused by COVID-19 created huge challenges for many contractors. Here are a few construction trends that you should look out for in 2022:
- Remote Technology
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increased focus on cleanliness protocols and social distancing on job sites. The focus on coronavirus-related safety measures is likely to continue in 2022.
With shrinking profits and labor shortages, construction industry players are increasingly relying on technologies that promise increased safety, efficiency, and productivity. Some of these tech products include:
- Robotics that perform monotonous tasks such as brick-laying
- Drones for land surveying and inspections. BigTentz reports that the use of drones has gone up 239% year over year
- The use of simulations and A.I. in collaborative design
- Wearable sensors for safety monitoring
- The use of Smart Protect Management Tools for various tasks such as budgeting and job scheduling
This increased use of technology is likely to continue in 2022.
The use of living construction material is a trend to watch in 2022. These biological compounds are now moving from interesting experiments to fully-developed materials that can be used in construction. The biological materials are made of fungi or bacteria. This makes them strong, light, and portable. Examples of such materials include self-mending concrete and mycelium composites.
3D printing of building components as well as components of construction equipment is now in full swing. 3D printing allows for mass production without the need to change machinery. It also reduces waste and turnaround times. With these benefits, the use of 3D printing is likely to continue well into 2022.
The adoption of pre-fab building and modular construction, which is already on a steady rise, is likely to continue in the post-pandemic era. Manufactured buildings are constructed in a way that allows for low worker density and labor costs. This makes them particularly well-suited for the current times.
Construction is a capital-intensive industry. Capital dislikes uncertainty. Therefore, the effects of the uncertainty that accompanies COVID-19 may still be felt in 2022.
Supply chain disruptions have forced contractors to seek alternative suppliers as well as diversify their supply chains. In the short term, this trend is not likely to change.
Building Information Modeling(BIM) and Virtual Design and Construction(VDC) technologies enable designers and builders to construct a building in a virtual environment before the shovel hits the ground. This enables them to address the project’s pitfalls before the real construction starts. The technologies’ cost-saving potential is huge, and therefore, the use of BIM and VDC technologies is likely to accelerate in 2022.
The July 2021 Consensus Construction Forecast projects that while the spending on nonresidential construction will decline by 3.9% this year, it will grow by 4.6% in 2022. A lot of nonresidential projects are going on in the Bay Area, many of them funded by big tech companies. For instance, Twitter is expected to open its building in Oakland in 2022.
Bankruptcies have dropped in the first half of 2021. This is because, instead of foreclosing, creditors are now seeking increased collateral or extending debt. However, these aren’t effective long-term solutions for companies with underlying financial problems. Therefore, in 2022, there will likely be more payment disputes.
While it’s virtually impossible to predict the future with precision, you can use history and market data to make educated guesses. At Proforma Construction, we can coordinate all professional services trades needed to take your project from inception to completion. Contact us today to get started.