Archive for October, 2010

Construction Forecast Looks Promising

October 29th, 2010  |  Published in Uncategorized

Since we’re on the topic of construction rebound (see previous post) … check out a new item, “Recovery in Building is Forecast for 2011,” published in today’s Wall Street Journal:

The nation’s construction industry will begin a slow recovery next year, as per the McGraw-Hill Construction forecast to be released Friday.

According to the forecast:

  • The value of new projects that start construction is expected to climb to $445.5 billion, an 8% rise from this year
  • New development of single-family houses, apartment buildings, and commercial properties is expected to increase
  • There will be less building of new highways, bridges, and other public works (as federal stimulus money is depleted)

McGraw-Hill expects the U.S. economy will grow 2.5% in 2011. Among specific sectors, single-family housing should see the strongest rebound in 2011, with $126.7 billion in construction starts, a 27% boost, according to the forecast. Commercial buildings—which includes offices, stores, hotels and warehouses—will improve with a 16% gain to $44.9 billion.

You can read the full article here.

Are you confident in a recovery? What positive signs have you seen in your region, line of work, etc.? Look to Maxwell Systems for construction software.

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Webinar About Construction Rebound

October 19th, 2010  |  Published in Uncategorized

Industry experts from Reed Construction Data, the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) will participate in a webinar on Thursday, October 21 at 2pm ET to examine market conditions and detail the construction outlook for upcoming months into 2011.

The complimentary webinar, “After the Fall:  When and Where Construction Will Rebound,” is open to everyone and will broadcast live. Registration is required. Speakers Jim Haughey, Ken Simonson, and Kermit Baker will accept questions from the audience in the last half hour.

Want to hear what three leading economic forecasters have to say about the climate for your business? Register now at Reed Construction’s web site, here.

Watch this preview video to learn more:

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Science Innovations Impacting Construction

October 13th, 2010  |  Published in Uncategorized

As reported in Popular Science, architects and cell biologists are teaming up to make biological skins for buildings to wear.

As human skin is remarkably responsive and adapts to changing conditions, building skins would be adaptable and able to respond to environmental factors like heat, humidity, and light, and respond to them efficiently to save energy.

Building Skins Engineers, design architects, and cell biologists from the University of Pennsylvania are using a National Science Foundation grant to study human cells as the models for next-generation building “skins.” They plan to study cells of all kinds, not just skin cells, to create future building “skins.” The work could lead to a new method of sustainable design.

As the article explains: “Cells use chemical and physical reactions to alter the geometry of their surrounding environments, and if scientists can unravel exactly how this happens, they could translate it into bio-mimetic designs, according to Penn. The goal would be to make building-scale sensing and control mechanisms. It’s not clear what building skins would look like, but the goal is to create structures that could one day automatically respond to environmental factors — just like our own skin.”

The research is considered particularly important as it represents a fusion of disciplines working towards a common goal for the public interest.

For more information, read this press release issued by University of Pennsylvania.

Are there innovations that’ve prompted your construction business to consider rethink sustainable design? Do you focus on green building initiatives? Look to Maxwell Systems for construction software.

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Successful Construction Companies Know That Marketing Matters

October 4th, 2010  |  Published in Uncategorized

“Marketing is the strategic plan that you develop for your organization that looks at your construction company’s strengths and weaknesses; the areas in which you have a competitive advantage; the market(s) that you will target your sales focus on; the demographics of your chosen market; and the pricing structure that you plan to use.”

That’s a brief excerpt from an article, “6 Steps to Develop an Effective Construction Marketing Plan,” authored by Michael Moore and published in Construction Business Owner.

Moore explains the importance of developing your marketing plan and adapting it to changing competitive environments: “Developing a construction marketing plan and strategy is critical to the success of your organization. Marketing is the strategic plan that you develop for your organization that looks at your construction company’s strengths and weaknesses; the areas in which you have a competitive advantage; the market(s) that you will target your sales focus on; the demographics of your chosen market; and the pricing structure that you plan to use. The construction market looks very, very different today than it did two or three years ago. Our construction marketing plans must change accordingly in order to capitalize on potential avenues of revenue.”

The author then outlines the 6 Steps that a construction business owner can follow to “create a simple, efficient, and effective construction marketing plan that will help your construction business grow.”

To read the 6 Steps, you can find the entire article at the magazine’s web site, here.

Do you agree with the 6 Steps? Do you have suggestions of your own “steps” that have worked well for your business? What “mix” of tactics have you used? How do you monitor results?

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