Industry outlook: Top 5 construction trends in 2021

Now that we’re well into 2021, many companies anticipate the year will help make up for the short fallings caused by the pandemic. Industries, including construction, are shifting gears, and strategizing to recover from the impact. But pandemic aside, the way forward is to continuously innovate and improve.

This is why our company culture at WellDone Inc. has allowed us to adapt quickly as industry demands force change. Part of our adaptability is driven by our focus on keeping a close watch on construction trends affecting the industry, our workforce, and our customers. With that in mind, we feel these five trends are the most impactful this year.

1. Safety in construction

Safety has always been a priority for our team. However, the rise of machine learning/AI capabilities that not only identify common safety issues but also help eliminate them is an exciting prospect for us.

Check out just some of these safety-related construction trends that are making waves in the industry.

AI-supported cameras provide a continuous feed of site activity. This allows construction sites to keep track of all staff and equipment for complete visibility and accountability. AI cameras record the activity and use data to anticipate and report on potential dangers in real-time.

Site managers can make informed decisions to keep the site safe while remaining more productive. AI tracking software provides analysis, so all stakeholders understand where and why accidents occur. As a result, site managers become more proactive, to effectively mitigate future injury risk.

Offsite AI such as robotics used in prefabrication also reduces injury risk as much of the work is completed in safer factory environments.

This actionable intelligence coupled with enhanced cleaning and sanitizing protocols, improved safety equipment and ongoing health and safety training for employees ensure a safer environment across all projects. We’ll continue a close watch on these and other construction trends that elevate safety to the next level.

2. Augmented Reality (AR)

AR is neither new nor trending but will be a defining element of growth and innovation in 2021. It’s one of the best ways to visualize new building projects.

Builders, architects, and construction companies have an invaluable tool that helps show clients what to expect when their projects are complete.

Efficient project staging at the pre-construction stage provides a tangible end-product that empowers you to make cost saving and design decisions.

AR can assist with:

  • 3D visualization to see how buildings fit in with their surroundings
  • Efficient automated measuring
  • Quick, affordable interpretation and presentation of architectural and structural changes
  • Safety training and hazard simulations

Problems can be caught at the earliest stages, speeding up the decision-making process. As well, errors are avoided when decision-makers can request changes and assess the results before they are implemented.

3. Building Information Modeling (BIM)

Again, not a new concept as far as construction trends go, but quite impactful in helping the industry evolve. 3D models created with building information modeling (BIM) provides efficiencies across many stages of the construction process.

Like AR, computer representations allow for easy sharing of ideas and data leading to fast prefabrication. Project time is decreased, while the rendering of the construction projects become more accurate.

4. Modular Building and Prefabrication

The introduction of modular construction produces factory-built elements that are delivered intact to construction sites.

As mentioned, this greatly improves construction efficiency and safety. As well, factory-built modules are created in pristine and controlled conditions to the highest standards. Builders are not slowed down by common construction obstacles such as weather fluctuations. This results in improved schedule efficiencies allowing construction companies to complete projects on time and on budget.

Cost reductions are seen not only in maintaining schedules, but also in waste reduction of expensive building materials.

5. Green Building

While green materials and construction aren’t necessarily new, the trend continues to influence sustainable building practices. Construction companies are now hyper-sensitive to conserving natural environments and protecting natural resources. Every step of the building process from conserving energy at architectural offices, to smart delivery of materials to construction sites, maintains the integrity of green building concepts. The less harm construction and its resulting product creates, the better it is for the environment and health of the community.

Demand for social and environmental responsibility from corporations puts further pressure on companies to embrace construction trends related to green building initiatives. The Green Building concept applies to both new projects and building restoration. Efforts to improve efficiencies such as new energy-efficient windows and doors, or curtain wall and glazing upgrades are examples of how using forward-thinking green concepts can transform aging buildings.

Other popular improvements include LEED certification, Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies (EDGE) certification and distributed energy systems.

The WellDone Inc. team is committed to following the emerging construction trends that improve safety and the services we deliver to our clients and community. For more information about our organization, reach out to our team at WellDone Inc.