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ConTech Blog - Main
August 14, 2023

ConTech Trends and Innovations – No. 20

A look at the world of Construction Technology – by Arnie Gess, publisher of Construction Links Network

Editorial submission deadline is every Friday a noon. Ideal for news releases, blogs, podcasts, upcoming webinars, case studies, whitepapers and videos. Always free for members – see media kit.

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Technology is transforming every aspect of the construction industry, from design and planning to project management and execution. As new tools and techniques continue to emerge, it’s more important than ever for professionals in the field to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and innovations. This blog series offers in-depth coverage of the most important developments in construction technology. Whether you’re interested in the latest software platforms, the newest building materials, or the cutting-edge research shaping the future of the industry, you’ll find it all here.

From our members

Fall 2023 Trade Shows: Experience TrueLook

TrueLook Fall 2023 trade show schedule

Coming up this fall, Truelook Construction Cameras is excited to announce their participation in two trade shows with their partners: Groundbreak by Procore and Autodesk University. They will be showcasing the capabilities of their construction cameras, from enhancing jobsite security to facilitating day-to-day project management, enabling remote monitoring, supporting marketing, and creating captivating time-lapse footage. Learn more by reading this blog.

Mitigating risk with technology

Mitigating risk with technology - SoftwareOne

Construction businesses have always had to navigate a high level of risk, but recent challenges have further compounded the issue. The current landscape highlights just how critical risk management is for AEC firms. Technology, particularly an integrated cloud platform, will continue to play a vital role in helping businesses better manage risk by connecting connect all project stakeholders, processes, and data in one integrated platform. Read this blog courtesy of SoftwareOne Canada.

How one contractor bids twice as fast and 30 percent more accurately

Spreadsheets were slow, clunky and everything felt more like a guess, according to Jeff Sparkowich, lead estimator at S.J. Cantwell. Since making the transition to B2W Estimate, he says the fast-growing sitework and dismantling contractor based in New Hampshire is completing estimates twice as fast and with 30 percent more accuracy. Sparkowich says intuitive interfaces and logic made the software easy to adopt. In this video, he explains how features like pre-populated item and resource databases save him time as he puts together 100 to 150 estimates per year. He also covers how adding B2W performance tracking software along with the estimating application helped the company connect the office and the field. The combination makes it easier to communicate bid data to the field and gives him easy access to actual production rates to validate estimates for similar jobs.

5 Reasons Why Manual Entry Stalls Construction Success

Manual Entry Stalls - OnTraccr

In today’s fast-paced construction industry, the accurate and timely management of data is crucial for project success. However, relying on traditional manual data entry methods poses several risks and challenges that can hinder productivity, increase costs, and compromise project outcomes. Moreover, the term ‘manual data entry methods’ often conjures the misconception that it solely pertains to paper and spreadsheets. However, this oversimplification fails to encompass the scope, as it also encompasses modern software solutions demanding extensive manual updates and lacking a design for seamless automation. In this blog post by OnTraccr Technologies, they will explore the dangers of manual data entry in construction and why embracing digital automation is the key to unlocking greater efficiency and success.

Southeast University Architects Used 3D-Printed Formworks To Create Skeleton Concrete Structures

Southeast University architects created a series of skeleton concrete structures using 3D-printed formworks as a digital take on 19th-century French structural rationalism. Viollet-le-Duc, the father of material-driven design, developed the paradigm of finding the ideal forms for specific materials to create buildings. The “material computation” movement of ICD Universität Stuttgart has recently revived this tradition, and the term “digital concrete” was coined at ETH Zürich.

New Residential Building Products Demand Meter Unveiled

John Burns Research and Consulting and Home Innovation Research Labs have introduced the Building Products Demand Meter, a novel data product tracking current and historical US residential installed product volumes for major building categories. Covering 18 key building product areas, from lumber to HVAC, since 2000, the meter offers insights for both new construction and repair/remodel segments. The data indicates negative growth trends in 2023 for most categories, with single-digit declines projected for 17 out of 18. Notably, weakness is pronounced in new construction, where double-digit declines are foreseen in 10 categories. Repair and remodel show more resilience, with only 8 of 18 categories declining this year. The data is updated quarterly, derived from Home Innovation’s extensive survey research.

Palari and Flat announce partnership to serve customers in West Coast markets

Palari, a sustainable home and community builder using innovative techniques, and Flat, a home management software company, have formed a partnership to enhance property values for Palari’s new homeowners along the West Coast. Palari employs 3D printing, panelized steel, and prefabrication for eco-friendly and efficient construction. The collaboration aims to modernize homeownership by combining technology with services. Homeowners gain access to Flat’s software, offering a dashboard for home status, maintenance management, storage of home information, and a vendor network for services. The partnership aligns with both companies’ dedication to streamlined homeownership processes and efficient platforms.

AVAIO Digital Partners Welcomes Thomas Nesel as Project Manager

AVAIO Digital Partners, a data center business, welcomes Thomas Nesel as a Project Manager with expertise in construction management and manufacturing engineering. Tom’s role involves overseeing operational processes, controls, and leading multi-continent data center projects from development to operation. With over 11 years of experience, he previously negotiated contracts and managed projects at AECOM, including overseeing projects like One Vanderbilt and Waterline Square. His background in Environmental Sciences and Engineering from Harvard University and experience as a manufacturing process engineer enhances his role. Tom’s expertise aligns with AVAIO Digital’s commitment to developing sustainable hyperscale data center campuses in North America and Europe.

Generac and Buildertrend Team Up to Present Easy-to-Use Design Tools for Home Builders and Homeowners

Generac Power Systems and Buildertrend have collaboratively introduced Generac’s comprehensive suite of residential energy solutions into the Buildertrend platform. This integration includes home standby generators, PWRcell solar + battery storage systems, and smart home devices. This integration simplifies the process for builders and homeowners to incorporate backup power and energy management tools during early design and construction stages, possibly reducing installation costs. The partnership reflects a growing demand for backup power among builders and emphasizes the significance of optimized material management. Generac’s Builder Alliance program and home energy technology portfolio also support the initiative.

Birdstop secures funding to expand its nationwide BVLOS drone network

Birdstop, Inc., a remote sensing firm, secures $2.3M funding to expand BVLOS drone network across critical infrastructure, enhance AI capabilities, and provide data-driven value. Led by Lerer Hippeau, the round involves Anorak Ventures, Correlation Ventures, and more, including energy and telecom investors. Birdstop’s NASA-style mission control directs drones resembling satellites on the ground. Their patented tech employs risk mitigation, including low altitude airspace deconfliction for safety. Holding top FAA approvals, Birdstop safeguards power grids, telecoms, and more, aiding disaster response. Active in various states, the company opens an R&D facility in Alabama for production scaling. CEO Keith Miao emphasizes simplicity in accessing assets via real-time drone data. Andrea Hippeau highlights the realization of Birdstop’s vision in advancing BVLOS technology.

Revizto and XL Construction Forge Enterprise Partnership to Optimize Cross-Team Coordination

Revizto, a leading Integrated Collaboration Platform, has established a three-year enterprise agreement with XL Construction, a purpose-driven Northern California-based organization. XL Construction, valuing adaptability and teamwork, employs Revizto to enhance cross-disciplinary collaboration. After a successful 10-month pilot, XL Construction expanded its partnership, recognizing Revizto as an effective tool for meaningful dialogues and efficient coordination. The partnership aims to streamline communication and collaboration within XL’s construction projects. The commitment to high-quality outcomes and the shared vision for construction technology success solidifies their collaboration. XL Construction’s Director of Construction Technology, Trevor Johnston, highlights Revizto’s ability to facilitate efficient coordination and visualization, making projects exponentially more collaborative and productive.

New Round of Funding Enables Transcend to Enhance Automation of Critical Infrastructure Design

Transcend Software Inc., a leading SaaS provider of generative design tools for critical infrastructure, has concluded its Series B financing round with involvement from Autodesk, Inc., a top software provider across architecture, engineering, construction, manufacturing, product design, and media sectors. Existing investors HG Ventures, PureTerra, and Aspen Capital Group also joined, along with new investors Arosa Capital and Riverstone Holdings LLC. The funding enables Transcend’s customer base expansion, already including major global infrastructure players. Designs created through Transcend’s software have benefited over 100 million people in 65 countries. Their Transcend Design Generator (TDG) automates critical infrastructure conceptual and preliminary design, emphasizing sustainability. The investment will accelerate their market leadership in generative design software.

DataStreet acquired by Clearstory to improve customer experience and extend its capabilities

Clearstory, formerly Extracker, a construction Change Order Communication Tool, has acquired DataStreet, specializing in aiding specialty contractors with Change Order Requests and Time and Material Tickets. This move follows Clearstory’s recent funding. DataStreet staff will join Clearstory, with CEO Chris Kinghorn becoming Head of Partnerships. The acquisition aligns with both companies’ visions of streamlining out-of-contract work for risk reduction and better project outcomes. Clearstory and DataStreet offer tools for contractors, uniting stakeholders and easing Change Order Risk. The collaboration aims to modernize the commercial construction industry, providing up-to-date technology for smoother operations and budget transparency.

Partnership between AuditSoft and SALUS to Innovate Safety and Compliance Auditing

AuditSoft, a leading safety and compliance auditing software, has partnered with SALUS, a construction industry-focused safety management platform. This collaboration optimizes safety and compliance audits, leveraging the integration of AuditSoft’s Open API with SALUS’s platform. This venture facilitates seamless access and embedding of safety documents, forms, and certificates into audit reports, simplifying the process and eliminating manual data transfer. The partnership aims to enhance auditing efficiency, reduce risks, and establish a user-centric safety culture. By digitizing safety management, the integration streamlines audits, provides instant access to safety-related documents, and supports a safer work environment, benefiting various industries.

BOSSCAT appoints Sean Hoffman to spearhead national field operations

BOSSCAT™, a real estate tech platform, has appointed Sean Hoffman as Senior VP of Field Operations. Responsible for service delivery, he brings over two decades of experience in construction and maintenance services. Formerly VP of Renovations at Progress Residential and VP at Primerica Construction and Altisource Portfolio Solutions, Hoffman aims to support BOSSCAT’s growth by delivering exceptional homeowner experiences. BOSSCAT™ offers instant estimates and online orders for repair, renovation, and maintenance, with partnerships including Pillar To Post and National Association of Realtors®. Operating in 12 states and DC, it secured $39M in Series A funding and is on the Inc. 5000 list of America’s Fastest-Growing Companies.

WINT Water Intelligence successfully raises $35 million in Series C funding round

WINT Water Intelligence has successfully concluded a $35 million Series C funding round, co-led by Inven Capital and Insight Partners. This investment will drive further growth and innovation in AI- and IoT-based water management solutions for construction, commercial, residential, and industrial applications. The funding reflects the urgent global demand for WINT’s solutions as water-related challenges increase, especially in terms of mitigating water damage and leaks. With strategic access to new markets and a commitment to sustainability, WINT aims to address these challenges and provide cutting-edge water management solutions that prevent waste and environmental impact throughout a building’s lifecycle.

Innovative AI Startup Zenerate Partners with SoLa Impact

Zenerate, a pioneering AI startup in Proptech, has partnered with SoLa Impact, a leading California real estate developer specializing in affordable housing. Zenerate’s advanced platform employs AI, generative design, and data analytics to optimize real estate project feasibility analysis, reducing turnaround time and enhancing development outcomes. SoLa Impact and Zenerate’s collaboration aims to revolutionize affordable housing by automating feasibility analysis for modular housing projects. This partnership introduces cutting-edge AI to modular construction, accelerating planning, design, and permit approval processes. SoLa Impact’s dedication to sustainable, community-focused housing aligns with Zenerate’s mission to bring more cost-effective, energy-efficient housing to the market swiftly, addressing California’s housing challenges. The integration of Zenerate’s software into SoLa Impact’s operations facilitates data-driven decision-making, streamlining evaluation processes and contributing to affordable housing initiatives. The partnership is poised to impact affordable housing development speed and scale, starting in Los Angeles and expanding to other areas.

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