AECCafe Weekly Review October 24th, 2017

13 Mid-September Economic Nuggets
October 23, 2017  by Alex Carrick, Chief Economist at ConstructConnect

Article source: ConstructConnect

Hurricane Harvey, which first struck southern Texas on Saturday August 25, and Hurricane Irma, which reached landfall in the Florida Keys on Sunday September 10, will ‘muddy’ the economic statistics for months to come. Estimates of the physical damage range widely, with $200 billion as the current outer limit.

Homes, shopping malls, schools, churches, fast-food outlets, abandoned motor vehicles and fragile vegetation were all victimized, to varying degrees, by storm surges, flooding and crushing winds. In the aftermath, restoring power and ensuring the safety of roads and bridges have been the immediate concerns.

Many building material suppliers and contractors, working together with insurance companies and government relief bodies, will be immersed in lengthy rebuilding efforts. The labor availability problem will become more acute.

Partnerships make the world go round.

Or so it would seem from the recent announcements made by Bentley Systems at their 2017 Year in Infrastructure Conference held in Singapore this past week. The event drew record numbers, primarily from Southeast Asia, China and India. 130 journalists also were in attendance.

How CadMakers Applies “Future Testing”
October 19, 2017  by Akio Moriwaki

Future Testing is a process that leverages virtual design and construction, simulation, and rapid iterations. With Future Testing, AEC project stakeholders are able to anticipate issues and opportunities early, reduce risk, take advantage of innovative ideas, and gain an edge on the competition.

An excellent example of a company employing the Future Testing method is CadMakers Inc., a construction and manufacturing technology company.

They work closely with AEC businesses to streamline projects from design to construction, leveraging leading engineering software solutions. Their design approach includes modeling all the building systems — architectural, structural, mechanical, electrical and plumbing, civil and geotechnical — and mapping them virtually in an accurate, virtual 3D model. Then, they get everyone — the project architect, engineers, and various subcontractors — together to view the model and crowdsource solutions to identified problems.

Chief Economist Alex Carrick Shares Outlook on 2018
October 19, 2017  by Alex Carrick, Chief Economist at ConstructConnect

Article source: ConstructConnect

Employment and revenues for architecture, engineering and construction have grown modestly for most of 2017. But the signals for the next 12 months are mixed, with architectural billings positive, construction starts uneven and contractors hiring, but worried about finding enough qualified workers. Meanwhile, there is huge uncertainty about the impact of potential changes in tax, infrastructure, immigration and other types of policy. How will these cross-cutting influences play out?

On November 1, three of the industry’s leading economists will come together for the annual Design and Construction Industry Economic Forecast, where they’ll discuss the changing landscape of commercial construction, the opportunities and challenges facing the industry as well as strategic insight on industry trends.

Construct Connect recently spoke to Alex Carrick, Chief Economists for ConstructConnect, for a quick discussion about his thoughts on the current state of the construction industry and where things are heading.

ConstructConnect: How long have you been hosting this webcast, what’s it about and who should attend?

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