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Technology trends for 2021 in the construction and building sector

The way of working has drastically changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Working from home instead of the office or other places has triggered the need for technology to fill the gaps that arise from working remotely. In the construction and building sector specifically, the need for knowing what is happening on-site from a distance has grown substantially since the COVID-19 outbreak.

To prevent loss of time and still deliver successful projects despite working remotely, new technology trends are emerging that drive the industry towards a digital transformation. Cameras with 360°angles have been placed around building sites to monitor progress from a distance. Using the data from the cameras, a building site can be reconstructed in 3D-modelling programmes to notice possible issues or delays. The information provided by smart monitoring also impacts the knowledge about localised air pollution or noise. By using technologies such as cloud computing and data reporting and processing, responding to developments can be done more efficiently and effectively in real-time. From the client's point of view, digitising communication by using virtual site walkthroughs enables stakeholders to collaborate remotely.

The technological innovations that arise from adapting to the consequences of a pandemic have inspired other digital trends within the construction and building sector. One of those trends is integrating data. A construction project involves multiple companies and thus multiple data sources and databases. By using an integrated system, the administrative workload is being reduced. By using advanced technologies, the construction and building sector is innovating to keep up with digitalisation in the working field.

The Advanced Technology for Industry (ATI) has recently published the Advanced Technology Watch on cloud computing within different sectors and technological trends and policies within the EU. For more information, consult the ATI project website.