People live in a constantly changing world. You can see this all around you, in every location and on every corner of the world. And behind the wheel of this fast-moving world stands technology. As a result of its constant updates and advances, the value chain of our environment is transforming faster than anyone could anticipate. Technology and automation are at the center of our world now and affect everything, including architecture.
You can witness this in literally everything. As Proptech says: ‘’Self-driving cars are on the roads, computers trade stocks at lightning speed, and drones may soon deliver the mail.’’ Artificial intelligence is the main ‘culprit’ for the creation of our smart cities and the businesses that come with them, including the fast advancing pace of the real estate industry.
As a result, one grand question has arisen in these past few years: will automation in construction and architecture substitute real estate agents with robots? Will robots disrupt the industry or enrich it? Technological innovations are always around the corner, constantly finding new ways of getting things done faster and more efficiently. Automation is considered to be a risk to people’s jobs by many, so how will its further development shape the buildings people live in?
All these questions and more are answered below.
Synthetic Biology and 3D Printing
Did you know that real estate of today is accountable for over 20% of all carbon emissions? To actually destabilize the climate and help the expected changes in demographics, this should be reduced, and significantly. Thanks to synthetic biology and 3D printing, it is expected that the property world will get a lot of help with this matter.
People are already starting to rely on 3D printed infrastructure and properties. Just think of the micro houses, London’s tube expansion, and the commercial office building located in Dubai. The numbers are only going upwards from here. And with the various 3D printing techniques appearing every day, printing entire buildings or at least parts of it has become almost tangible at this point.
Such structures will do wonders for the buildings. They’ll provide more flexibility and improve the stability of the structures, therefore increase the life cycle and make grand changes in terms of decreasing the need for maintenance. All of this combined leads to one grand goal in the architecture world – reduced resource input.
This is just the direct impact 3D printing has. ‘’Indirectly, 3D printing can enable local goods’ fabrication, reduce the transportation that is now emission-intense, as well as reduce the logistics hubs and industrial properties’ constructions. Soil-sealing is about to become a lesser problem, and the industry will owe most of our thanks to 3D printing.’’ – says Peter Schmitt, architecture expert at Australia essay.
With the advances in biopolymers and their beginnings in the projects of large scale, big changes are right around the corner. When this happens, the combination of synthetic biology and 3D printing will allow for sustainable bioplastics creation, which can, of course, be used in construction. Basically, you’d be looking at a whole new infrastructure made of materials that are bio-engineered, synthetic, and produce regenerative energy or transmit data.
Changes in People’s Ageing
Thanks to modern healthcare and its technology enhancement, the world is already experiencing a longer lifespan when compared to the past. Findings like CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing might be at their starting phase right now, but they are expected to increase this longevity even further. So, people are looking at a medicine focused toward preventing diseases instead of reacting to them and treating them, which would, in return, make for grand and positive changes in our aging.
Everyone can see this. If you’ve been using a nutrition app or a fitness tracker on your phone, it’s how the process is being expedited. The basis of preventive healthcare aims to avert diseases’ occurrence and minimize the need for treating actual, existent symptoms.
How will this affect the buildings, you might ask?
Well, think of it this way. If people in our world reach a 90th birthday on average thanks to the automation and technology’s impact on healthcare, you can expect a rapid and grand shift in population age and density. All of the living people will need a place to live in. That’s where buildings come in the picture.
At that point, countries will have to adapt to this – their new aging societies. Individual property demand will eventually decrease, and the focus will be put on accessibility. At least, this will happen in places with less populated, older economies.
On the other hand, the densely populated locations, such as the mega-cities of our world, will experience a high demand for flexible, energy-efficient properties that are also constructed sustainably. This, of course, will be accelerated due to the soil sealing rates and current developments, which at that point, won’t be tolerable on an environmental level.
The Impact on Real Estate Demand
All the changes discussed above sound excellent, but the real estate industry is filled with questions and concerns in regard to the real estate demand in the future. In automation and technology-driven future, the predicted number of jobs that will completely disappear from the market reaches 50% by 2055. Sure, plenty of new job opportunities arise daily thanks to technology and automation, but such grand changes will need some time to be accepted by the real estate community.
The automation and technology train is on the move, and there is no clear way of stopping it now. Very soon, people are looking at diminishing demand for office space. As a result, connected spaces demand is already on the rise, requiring an increase in flexibility and compatibility in the commercial properties.
Thanks to the already obvious popularity of remote working and automation, the property industry looks forward to completing redevelopment of the current offices into various residential properties. In the world’s future cities, culture and community will define how and where people live and cities will remain the cultural hubs, but rural environments are bound to become more popular from what they are now, and fast.
So, in terms of building – you are looking at so widespread, grand changes. You are looking at a demand of connected and flexible real estate, abandonment of analog developments, shifts in work and living environments, as well as entire shifts in rural environments’ infrastructure. Basically, automation is bound to make some grand changes in every field – commercial, residential, and industrial.
If you think about it, you are already living into these changes. They happen so fast and unexpectedly, people are rapidly getting used to them and welcoming them into their lives. People spend more and more of their time in their buildings, especially those who live in more developed countries. It is concerning in terms of people’s health, but experts don’t see it going anywhere any time soon. With the increase in online sales, more and more people quit their office jobs or reject the idea of it altogether, and spend their time working from – of course, their homes.
What Can You Do?
It is the world of online sales and virtual reality. While this might be a shock for those who don’t expect behavior changes at such a massive number, you should definitely stay on track with technology and automation changes. Everything changes – people’s sleeping, consumption, living, working – basically every pattern in their everyday lives. Naturally, buildings people create and live with change at the same pace, too.
The people are the moving force of everything, meaning that the future of the buildings is in their hands. It is the human task and the right to choose where to live and where to work, as well as where to spend the days. Whether you like identification as a factor or guidance in your life or not, it is up to you to decide. However, what must not be done is to ignore the changes that are happening. There are two choices – to either grasp automation and technology as the tools that will change your lives at their core, or decide on a different future to live in.