Construction Trends that are Beyond Science Fiction

In Chicago, it is said there are only two seasons: winter and construction (and the saying is employed in other regions of the Midwest). Even if true, that certainly has not detained the many predictions for 2015 trends from general contractors and other sectors in the construction industry. All the forecasts are based on sound data, and some are so innovative and high-tech, they could be in the providence of the next James Cameron film.

In fact, some of these haven’t even made it to any science fiction blockbuster:

Bottled water…so why not bottled sunlight ?

The solar industry continues to boom, and the idea of sunlight assisting society is no longer even modern (if that even makes sense). The U.S. has even surpassed Germany as the world’s leading producer of solar power. Solar panels and other solar equipment are becoming more available, but the cost is often something along the lines of buying a star.

So why not just buy the solar energy itself? That’s what one company already does, with one million customers and growing.  Consumers don’t exactly purchase liquid plasma, but electrical energy from solar energy at a much affordable cost.

Your home will be in the clouds, at least at first

A blogger from Construction Monitor wrote last year:

Designing and managing construction projects in cloud-based technology will soon be the norm. Now’s the time to get on board with the fast, efficient collaboration cloud computing enables .

Society has come a long way from the late 90s resistance to the notion of handing over large amounts of information to third party companies for online storage. Efficiency overcame safety in society. When it comes to general contractors, though, safety will surely always come first, even as project management becomes effortless and cloudless.

Put a cork in it and open your doors

Cork has been used since the days of the ancient Greeks, but it is actually in demand as a high-tech construction solution. It is waterproof, fire resistant, flexible, sound proof, and completely organic. Using cork on floors and walls in construction makes perfect sense, and furthermore it has been utilized in car engines, airport runaways, and even space shuttles.

Some companies now offer cork in liquid form, basically transforming any construction into a green and safe building with a few sprays!

Buildings that recycle more than humans

As seen above, solar energy can be transported and sold. In addition, solar energy buildings are now able to send surplus solar energy back into a grid, thereby assisting other green facilities.

In addition, using the Seattle Bullitt Center building as a prime example, it is possible to have buildings that treat and recycle rainwater or even sewage water. At this rate, buildings and houses will even be able to take out the trash on a rainy day…

Screaming at your appliances no longer makes you crazy

Grid-aware appliances are growing in numbers, and it basically means your smartphone will soon no longer be the only smart object at home.  A fridge can now remind one that it is low on milk, while the washing machine can be controlled remotely with a smartphone or tablet. Even if some of the grid-aware technology borders on creepy, its real advantage is that its controls are in real-time—meaning owners know exactly how much energy they are using. This will make anyone’s wallet speak with a positive tone.

As mentioned, some of the above trends have yet to make it to any science fiction, and perhaps the latest Avengers or Star Wars flicks in 2015 will catch up with the inventiveness and determination of general contractors, engineers, tech gurus, and architects in the (seemingly) mundane world of reality.

Until then, may the Force be with those involved in construction.

 Solar Energy Usage Statistics Infographic


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