The coronavirus outbreak and COVID-19 pandemic have, so far, caused only a minor slowdown in the construction sector. The hope is that this economic impact is short-lived and activity returns to normal before doing more lasting damage to the industry.
Per Dodge Data & Analytics, the leading provider of data, analytics, and intelligence to the North American construction industry, March saw construction starts decline by a scant 0.6%. Dodge reports that it is still very early on in the COVID-19 crisis; however, it is heartening that projects continued to move into the early planning stages at a reasonable pace despite the near stoppage in economic activity over the last few weeks.
Though it is too soon to say if the COVID-19 crisis will give the construction technology industry a boost, there are signs that builders are turning to tech tools during this disruptive time to help improve efficiency and resiliency.
Modern office buildings are an incredibly complex orchestration of steel, glass, concrete, and an array of subsystems: heating and cooling, security, telecom, power, plumbing, and more.
Yet much of the process of managing the “assembly” of these massive and complicated structures remains manual. The resulting inefficiency leads to most major commercial construction projects coming in late and over budget.
But a new breed of technology companies is setting out to change that. One of the most fascinating is Innovative Construction Technology (ICT), led by CEO Tim Duncan.