BUILDING CONSTRUCTION – FASTER SMARTER GREENER
Real estate developers are turning to technology to cut construction costs and time. The experts gathered at Realty+ conclave in Bengaluru discussed, if technology is the answer to offsetting slowdown in real estate.
TEXT: SREYASI MAITY
Prefabrication, modular systems, high-performance materials, faster vertical transportation etc. are some of the new methods, developers are embracing to reduce construction time for faster ROI and to minimize building’s operational expenses over its lifecycle. In addition, sustainable and efficient building materials like flyash bricks and foam-based concrete are finding more takers in the building construction space. Adarsh Narahari, MD, Primus Lifespaces Pvt Ltd was of the view, “There have been some incremental improvements in the field of precast, formwork, etc. and going forward water would be much more productively utilized, power would be automated and IoT devices will make life much simpler.” Dr. L.R. Manjunatha, Chairman -Indian Concrete Institute-Bengaluru Chapter explaining the new trend said, “Globally, India and China produce maximum Co2 because of the construction. The manufacturing process of cement can be suitably altered to bring down the emission levels significantly. Also, use of high performance cement and concrete instead of OPC will give better quality buildings with longer lifecycle thereby minimizing C&D waste.”
The world is speedy changing and progressing. Smarter technology, digitalization and atomization is imperative for millennial today in real estate space. In sync, world over, construction companies are choosing smarter innovation low-energy devices, utilizing recycled materials instead and adopting enhanced recyclability.”
Building design, construction, and management are going through a major shift to deliver innovation and an optimal experience to the occupants. Briefing on the elevator technology that is essential in the tall buildings.The amount of construction happening in India is enormous. Though the elevator industry is close to two centuries old, even today we are using outdated methods in India. The elevator companies have introduced Sensors, data collection and Internet of Things to move from reactive, to proactive and predictive stage. Gradually, Indian buildings are adopting these latest platforms but more awareness is required.
Technology has not been completely utilized by construction professionals in India. Advanced materials, sustainable alternatives and smart technologies are available, we need to have the desire to adopt and implement the same. It will greatly enhance the quality of construction and turnaround time for completion, benefitting the developers.
Change is inevitable. The new generation of developers are gradually switching from conventional to advanced construction methods. The government can help by giving impetus to technology import and regularizing the novel materials after due diligence.
THE ROLE OF GOVERNMENT
In the opinion of the panellists, government – acting both as the regulator and as a major project owner can be the influential driver of faster, greener and smarter construction. Nejeeb Khan, Managing Director KGD Architecture said “Developers cut corners when it comes to mechanization or advanced materials due to high initial cost. Prefabrication and cross-laminated timber system are used worldwide for faster and environmentally cleaner construction. Government using new techniques in its own projects would considerably bring down the costs, given the quantum of government works. Also, every project takes 4-5 years to finish it. The biggest issue for developers today is the delivery of the project. The construction quality is another important aspect. The efficiency of design makes a lot of difference in the use of resources and materials and construction technologies can minimize construction timelines.”
With new technologies on the way, the Government needs to include them in National Building Code. We are continuously dependent on the Government to approve certain technologies which are available, but cannot be used. The construction industry will have to be work with the Government regulators.
The discussion recognized the need of technology, for speedier completion of project and faster sales. With most developers focusing on affordable housing which is game of volumes and speedy construction to make profit margins, cost effective technologies become imperative. At the other end of the spectrum, the buildings are getting taller day by day and need building technologies and management systems for occupants comfort and safety.