Why Haven't Buildings Become Productised? An Exploration of the Possibilities and Barriers to Buildings of the Future
While increasing populations and urbanisation are leading to rising demand for construction, pushing up revenues, both profits and affordability are decreasing. Cost and time are therefore becoming even more of an imperative for return on investment (ROI) and overall growth. Despite advances in technology, and the emergence of industrialised construction some 60 or so years ago, we are still ‘swinging hammers’ on site, creating buildings that are all unique and bespoke. Why is that?
Aurecon, SMEC Dominate at the Australian Engineering Excellence Awards 2020
The winners list includes the likes of the Sydney Metro, Canberra Light Rail, Albion Park Bypass and Newcastle Light Rail but also includes construction innovations such as University of Wollongong’s Desert Rose House and self-propelled modular transporters (SPMTs) developed by Gateway South (Fulton Hogan-Laing O’Rourke Joint Venture) for the Darlington Upgrade in South Australia.
First-of-its-Kind Timber-Steel Hybrid Bridge Proposed for West Seattle
A proposal for the reconstruction of the failing West Seattle Bridge has been put forward that utilises a hybrid timber and steel arch structure. B+H Architects, SMEC and Robert Bird Group have put forward the unsolicited design proposal.
Stadium Roof Inspired by a Leaf ..and Other Winners from Australia’s Most Innovative Engineers 2020
“Innovations ranged from macro-scale pieces of infrastructure like railway stations and sports stadiums, to micro-scale technology like atomically thin materials,” says Engineers Australia CEO Dr Bronwyn Evans.
NSW Just Implemented New Building Reform - Here’s What’s Changed
The Residential Apartment Buildings (Compliance and Enforcement Powers) Act 2020 (NSW) came into effect on the 1st September 2020, giving the NSW Building Commissioner new powers to intervene in the construction of residential apartment projects.
A Complete List of Projects Being Fast-Tracked to Stimulate the Economy
Snowy Hydro 2.0 was granted two exemptions from the NSW Biosecurity Act whilst Queensland passed the Forest Wind Development Bill 2020 to speed up the $2B wind project between Gympie and Maryborough.Whether or not some of these projects have been approved prematurely and before a proper assessment is a matter for debate.
These Companies are Turning CO2 into Concrete.. Could it be the Solution to Construction’s Emissions Problem?
This is a double win for concrete’s emissions as it cuts down emissions resulting from concrete production and captures additional CO2 from power plants that would otherwise go into the atmosphere. Then it permanently stores it in the concrete.
Construction Safety Startup Raises $4M to Monitor Machinery Blind Spots
Toolbox Spotter has been trained by over 100,000 hours of video footage of worksites to learn how to identify workers and their behaviour. The tech has already been adopted by major players in construction, transport and mining including Transport for NSW, Metro Trains Melbourne, McConnell Dowell, Georgiou Group BHP, Fortescue Metals, Patrick and Aurizon.
Weekly News Highlights - 8th May 2020
West Gate Tunnel delayed until 2023, Western Australia to provide $24.5 million in support to trades and apprentices and Lendlease are seeking a $1.15B investment to keep it afloat during a global downturn in property and construction.. this was your week in construction.
Transparency Key to Fixing the Building Products Industry
Measures that focus on improving the industry's information flow, transparency, accountability, and feedback loops are more realistic and achievable in the short-term than overarching compliance and regulation. A system that inherently drives accountability and transparency allows the market to regulate.
Italian-led Consortium Design Intensive Care Pods for COVID-19 Treatment
An international task force has developed a concept for modular intensive care pods to increase hospital capacity for COVID-19 patients. The task force says they could be as fast to mount as a hospital tent, but as safe as an isolation ward.
Global Construction Community Divided over Site Shutdowns
Construction site staff would hardly notice they’re in the middle of a pandemic with many workers expressing their concern over crowded sites and union negligence.This is causing a divide in the global construction community between those that are calling for site shutdowns and those wanting to keep construction open for business.In a rare alliance, the CFMEU and Master Builders Australia have formed a united front to keep sites open.
Software Billionaire's Portable Solar Provides Power to Bushfire-Hit Areas
The collaboration between Atlassian Cofounder, Mike Cannon-Brookes, and solar company 5B is called the Resilient Energy Collective and uses prefabricated solar panels in conjunction with Tesla’s Powerwall battery pack to generate and store electricity.
The Innovative Robotic Device Making Cranes Safer
Roborigger is a remote-controlled stabilisation system that eliminates the need for workers at the bottom of crane loads. It has been used successfully on several sites including the Adelaide casino, a Fortescue mine in the Pilbara and a demolition site in George St, Sydney.