As the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic continues, professionals in the construction industry are learning to adapt to a new paradigm while bracing for further changes. Some of the many ways the pandemic may change the industry in the coming years include:
- More offsite building: Modular construction was gaining popularity before the pandemic, but found even more adoption as the crisis heightened. Offsite building means fewer people crammed into a single construction site. It also creates a more controlled environment that is easier to clean and monitor for distancing and other safety practices.
- New technologies: From drones to virtual reality, construction professionals have increased their adoption of new technologies during the crisis. Some of these new technologies allow professionals the opportunity to monitor worksites remotely when they used to have to be there in person. No matter how much longer the pandemic continues, these technologies are likely to stick around.
- Modified construction contracts: Going forward, more construction contracts may contain pandemic-specific clauses. Most didn’t see this pandemic coming, but it will be fresh in the minds of those looking to avoid losses in the event another crisis hits.
- A shift in construction projects: During the current pandemic, construction of roads, bridges and other infrastructure thrived while projects focused on movie theaters, hotels and similar projects dropped off. This trend may continue in the coming years.
Sea changes in the construction industry are always areas of concern for construction unions in New York and throughout the country. We will keep an eye on these new developments to monitor how they affect New York construction workers and the unions that represent them.