Building Resilience: Changing the approach to construction
We explore what needs to change as technology and equipment advances, and skill requirements along with demand continues to change.
It’s not just COVID-19 which is continuing to change the construction sector. Areas such as skill requirements, varying demand for different jobs and more innovative projects, and shorter time frames are all having an effect.
The report also reveals the opportunities and issues the industry faces during the remainder of 2020 whilst exemplifying the virtues of a regionally engaged and globally responsive approach.
Due to the size of the construction sector across the globe, transformation and innovation will certainly take time. This usually isn’t an issue, however, the limitations of this become evident when a new threat or opportunity appears on the horizon.
In order to embrace these challenges and opportunities, the industry needs to come together and approach the situation and share its successes.
The recent report focuses on Q1 2020 and explores how the construction market has changed. It has provided an in-depth insight into trends that are thought to make a large impact.
The snapshot explores some of this years biggest innovations and technological advancements and developments so far. These include the adoption of smart building technologies in the USA in addition to the growth of modular construction which has taken India’s construction sector by storm.
The report also touches on the COVID-19 pandemic and how it is impacting the construction industry both in the present and into the future.
Despite the massive effect COVID-19 had on the industry and economies worldwide, it is still expected that construction innovation and technology will continue to expand and grow.
Asite’s CEO, Nathan Doughty, said: “2020 has not been the year we imagined and planned for. The construction industry is facing a turbulent few months as we all try to deal with the current pandemic.
“Now more than ever, I believe we need to come together to prepare and safeguard our society for the future. Construction and infrastructure are vital to our ability to collectively safeguard the health of our fellow citizens, and to educate, feed and house us all. We must keep building, and inevitably we will. The question is how do we build resilience into the industry and into the fabric of the built environment itself?
“Digital engineering and remote-working technologies present opportunities for many organisations to continue with business in the face of change. Sharing innovation from colleagues around the world will help us all to advance collaboratively.
“I’ve seen first-hand how the construction industry can overcome adversity and help rebuild following times of hardship. Construction was fundamental to crisis response and in the rebuilding process in my hometown of Houston after Hurricane Harvey three years ago.
“Today, the industry has quickly geared up to deliver hospital beds for health services across the world and re-geared manufacturing for PPE and health equipment. We can build on lessons learned in difficult times. Connecting people around the world will help us learn from one another and innovate.”
In conclusion, the optimistic outlook that the report gives anticipates that the industry will continue to transform and innovate throughout the remainder of 2020 and beyond despite concerns surrounding climate change and the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic.
XYZ Reality receives £20m to develop Assisted Reality
Founded in 2017, XYZ Reality aims to "revolutionise" the construction sector with its Engineering-Grade Augmented Reality (AR) solution, Holosite.
Designed to enable an on time and on budget delivery of construction projects, by eliminating building errors, HoloSite has been available to select customers through an early access programme and has already been used on projects totalling a value of over £1.5bn in the last year.
With approximately 98% of construction megaprojects facing cost overruns or delays and 7-11% of project costs being spent on correcting errors, XYZ Reality’s purpose-built integrated AR solution directly addresses these issues.
With its safety certified AR hardhat, cloud platform and in-built proprietary software, Holosite accurately positions high fidelity 3D design models on construction sites, enabling teams to build it right, first time. The technology system has been used on complex construction projects including data centres, pharmaceutical facilities and airports.
This funding will be used to accelerate the company’s ambition of transforming projects by preparing for HoloSite’s commercial launch in the USA and continuing investment in strengthening research and development. The company is also growing its London team to include key hires across technology, manufacturing, sales and marketing.
David Mitchell, Founder and CEO of XYZ Reality, said developing its engineering-Grade AR solution helping construction teams identify errors in real-time is just the start.
"The next phase is Assisted Reality, where our spatial computing technology will have the intelligence to automatically detect and report issues in the field. And ultimately, the goal is builders building from holograms. Our vision of developing world changing products aligns with Octopus Ventures’ mission of investing in companies that are powering the next industrial revolution. We look forward to building history.”
The latest round of funding is led by Octopus Ventures, one of the largest and most active venture investors in Europe, known for its commitment of investing in companies and founders that are changing the world. Octopus Ventures has a strong track record, spanning investment in health, fintech, consumer, B2B software, and deep tech. This includes WaveOptics, one of Octopus Ventures’ early investments in Augmented Reality, which was recently acquired by Snap Inc.
Rebecca Hunt, early-stage investor at Octopus Ventures, said: "We’ve always invested in entrepreneurs leading industry change and XYZ is doing just that. It's solving a massive problem that costs the construction industry billions every year, using its Engineering-Grade Augmented Reality solution to spearhead a shift in the sector’s approach. The founding team of David, Umar and Murray have deep domain and technical expertise, which we believe makes XYZ uniquely placed to drive this transformation.”
XYZ Reality also announces a new partnership with Mace, for the construction of a hyper-scale data centre in Europe. With speed to market being particularly essential for mission critical builds, HoloSite’s AR technology will have a significant role in supporting an accurate and time effective build for Mace, which last week appointed Jon McElroy its new Managing Director for International Technology.
Mace Technical Director, Stephen Henley, said: “Mace has built a reputation of redefining the boundaries of ambition, always bringing efficiency, innovation and responsibility to our projects. With the implementation of XYZ’s groundbreaking AR system, we continue to be committed to delivering projects faster, safer and better than ever before.”
Five years ago, Heather Bellini of Goldman Sachs Research expected virtual and augmented reality to become an $80 billion market by 2025.
But according to new research by global tech market advisory firm ABI Research, nearly 28 million augmented and mixed reality smart glasses will ship in 2026, while the total global AR/MR market will surpass $175 billion in the same year.
"Major tech players across hardware, software, and services look familiar in the consumer space, contributing to strong and consistent overall growth," says Eric Abbruzzese, Research Director for ABI Research. "Those big tech names, with active investment and product ranging from already available, to announced, to all-but-announced, are creating a consumer AR market that will be dynamic and welcoming rather than struggling and immature."