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The demand for a faster building process remains high except for Italy

In recent months I have regularly posted information on the key trends in the construction industry.

In recent months I have regularly posted information on the key trends in the construction industry. We have discussed topics ranging from BIM to Bio based materials and from modular building to changes in the DMU. In my opinion, the future of the construction sector is about building faster, smarter and cheaper. The key trends we are following are all part of this, one way or the other.

When looking at the construction industry it’s clear that there is a lot of room for an increase in efficiency and effectively. In the past, the construction industry was very traditional and slow to adapt to new technologies and ideas.

I always like to compare the construction industry with the automotive industry. It’s incredible to see how much more the automotive industry has been able to improve the production process compared to the construction industry. Of course there are differences between these industries that make a true comparison difficult, but the difference is still striking.

In recent years however we have seen the construction industry changing faster than ever before. It’s getting more digital, there is more cooperation between the different stakeholders in the construction process and new building techniques (or a higher willingness to adapt them) are leading to a faster building process. For example, architects are now much more open to modular/conceptual building than 5 years ago. One of the reasons is that due to technological advances modular/conceptual building is possible without the loss of too much design freedom.

A key driver for the trends towards building faster is of course the principal/investors. Are they putting pressure on the industry to build faster? And if so, is this pressure felt by the architects? The answer to this questions can be found in the image above. In most countries a majority of architects experience that a faster building process is required by principals and investors alike. In the UK and Italy the percentage of architects experiencing the pressure for a faster building process is lower than in 2014 and a negative trend is visible.

We have seen that the demand has increased during the crisis. In most countries the demand is now stable at a relatively high level, but expected to continue to grow (albeit slowly).

The results are based on the European architectural barometer, a quarterly survey amongst 1,600 architects.

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