Construction Insider: BUILDS Act reintroduction in Senate, construction starts April value, and more

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Weekly Roundup: BUILDS Act, construction starts value decline, & more

Weekly Roundup: BUILDS Act, construction starts value decline, & more

May 27, 2019

Construction Insider is a weekly roundup of the latest news and insights in construction.

Construction training bill reintroduced in US Senate

The Building U.S. Infrastructure by Leveraging Demands for Skills Act, or BUILDS Act, was recently reintroduced to the US Senate. The bill aims to standardize worker training and improve employee retention in the fields of construction, transportation, and energy. CBS19 News

  • Senators Tim Kaine and Rob Portman spearheaded the reintroduction of the BUILDS Act on the Senate floor. “It’s critical that we rebuild our crumbling infrastructure, but in order to do that, we need a skilled workforce,” said Kaine.
  • An estimated 11 million job opportunities are expected to open if a $1 trillion infrastructure investment is approved, says a study conducted by Georgetown University Center of Education and Workforce.
  • The bill plans to promote a collaborative relationship between businesses, labor representatives, educators, and other stakeholders to encourage industry growth through on-the-job skill training, career awareness programs, and employment support services.

“Construction starts” value down by 15% in April

April’s new construction starts value suffered a 15% decline, effectively cancelling out a reported 16% increase in March as reported by forecasting company Dodge Data & Analytics. The value of April construction starts currently sits at $685.2 billion. Builder

  • The non-building construction sector, which consists of public works projects and utility plants, suffers the steepest drop of 31% from a high March value that was due to the start of the $4.3 billion Calcasieu Pass LNG export terminal in Cameron LA.
  • The non-residential building sector also dropped by 18% as a number of large projects had been started in March. One of these projects is the construction of the $1.6 billion Toyota-Mazda manufacturing facility in Huntsville, Alabama.
  • Of the three major construction sectors, the residential building sector poses the best numbers as its construction starts value only declined by 1%.

Market for construction robots may reach $226M revenue by 2025

Over 7,000 robots may be deployed to handle construction-related tasks by 2025 according to market-intelligence group Tractica. The team’s forecast estimates a $226 million revenue for the construction robotic market in the next five years. For Construction Pros

  • Labor intensive industries like construction have started using robot technology to improve productivity and solve production issues like labor shortages. Tractica studies further say that this trend is bound to improve as more companies look to optimize their operations.
  • “At this early stage in the construction robotics industry, a few companies are offering products for sale or lease,” said Tractica analyst Glenn Sanders.
  • The robot market is expected to primarily cater to construction sites that need robot assistants. Infrastructure robots, structure robots, and finishing robots are also considered to be lucrative products in the market.