The secret key to owner-contractor relationships?
Newsletter cover photo
"We're here to fix your HVAC unit."
Hey there,
July employment news, Iron Man suits for construction workers, AI-designed buildings, and America's favorite fish-themed week of TV; let's dive into the deep end of news and notes—

Construction

From
Contractor Magazine
,
an analysis of data
from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics by the Associated Builders and Contractors shows that nonresidential construction employment fell in July.
The 4,000 net employment fall stems from—wait for it—COVID-19. Heard of it? The good news is that 639,000 construction jobs have been added over the last 3 months; about 59% of jobs lost during the recession.
Viral resurgence and the government's assistance play a large factor in job retention moving forward. ABC Chief Economist Anirban Basu notes, "The trajectory of nonresidential construction during the months ahead will depend heavily upon the nature of economic stimulus and the extent policymakers prioritize construction and infrastructure."
WOSU Public Media
and
Cincinnati Enquirer
report that Turner Construction has halted two separate projects in Ohio—
FC Cincinnati Stadium
and
Facebook's New Albany campus
—due to racist incidents.
Turner VP and GM David Spaulding has instituted anti-bias training for every member on each jobsite, noting that construction will not continue until everyone has completed training.
Two incidents perpetrated by Turner subcontractors on the $250m FC Cincinnati stadium site occurred last week. A third incident involving racist graffiti on the $1.7b Facebook campus occurred almost simultaneously.
Racist incidents have seen an upswing of late, with nooses found on jobsites in Toronto, Las Vegas, Baltimore, and Portland, with 5 such incidents occurring in Toronto alone.
Kudos to Turner for being quick on the draw to emphasize that this sort of ignorant conduct won't fly, along with reportedly setting and meeting goals to spend on minority and women-owned businesses in the community.
From
Procore
, check out how
optimizing project delivery
is the secret key to enhancing the owner-contractor relationship. Stellar handover helps to ensure repeat business during a time when winning new business in the face of economic downturn is more difficult than ever. Come for the time-saving closeout workflow, stay for the finally-useful-to-the-owner turnover package.
Hilti North America
has unveiled their new wearable exoskeleton, the
EX-01
. It will be worn on jobsites in Sweden this month before rolling out in the US later this year.
The suit, weighing in at only 4lbs, reportedly alleviates 47% of strain and fatigue during primarily indoor work including drywall hanging, maintenance, and various mechanical work.
Hilti's suit gives an advantage to younger ("novice") and older ("experienced") workers alike, by providing added strength and longevity boosts.
We're more than prepared to unleash
Iron Man
comparisons for the GC that implements these bad boys first.
Now if only Hilti integrates with
Sony's t-shirt air conditioner
, the modern construction worker will truly be unstoppable.
For Construction Pros
reports that Boston Dynamics will team up with FARO Technologies, Inc. to release
FARO Trek
- a 3D mobile scanning integration with Spot the robot construction dog.
"Lightweight, compact FocusS Laser Scanner enables users to capture fast, accurate measurements of complex objects and buildings, includes a built-in 8-megapixel HDR camera and offers a 4.5-hour battery per charge."
No Spot news sneaks past us—our twitter notifications have been set to "REALLY LOUD" to the point that you shouldn't be surprised when Buildr becomes the first software company to own a pet robot construction dog.
Check out
TechCrunch
's rundown of Social Construct's
computer-optimized buildings
that could reduce the time and cost of constructing a building between 20-30%.
Software-generated floor plans mean the entire design of a project is essentially left to AI, in spite of Social Construct shying away from the "AI" term to avoid hype.
We're usually fairly pro-tech around these parts, but subbing out human ingenuity for an algorithm seems a little
too
dystopian novel, right?
To update the Allegiant Stadium news from last week, the Mortenson | McCarthy co-op will
officially be without in-person fans
, reports
KTNV Las Vegas
. In the Allegiant opener on September 21, the Raiders are set to play tumbleweeds.

Non-Construction

A Bigger Boat
: Tragically, we're half-a-week late on this. It's Shark Week, FYI. Here are
all the ways
you can address your childhood fears of
Jaws
head on even if you don't have cable.
Be-switched
: COVID(eogames)-19 is a thing because somebody forgot to tell Nintendo and their seemingly magical
428% quarterly sales increase
that every business had to take a hit during quarantine. Blame
Animal Crossing
for making interior design a little too addictive.
Appetizer
: TikTok's older, cooler brother is
an app called Triller
who's looking to absorb some of TikTok's audience ("you gonna eat those fries?") amidst all the banning talk.
Brawl in the family
: In an ironic subversion of social distancing, there was a
bench-clearing scuffle
between the Astros and A's. The cardboard fan cutouts looking on seemed unamused.
Big macOS
: Be sure to check out
all the features
of the Big Sur macOS 11.0 preview. Translucence! Rounded edges! Slight differences!
Nappetizer
: Here's
a nap playbook
for the ideal nap that doesn't ruin your actual, full night's sleep—the trailer before the full movie, if you will (apparently coffee right before your nap is a smart move).
Happy trailers
: Speaking of trailers, we're more than excited about
Eternal Sunshine
scribe
Charlie Kaufman's latest flick
,
i'm thinking of ending things
.
Like this? Want to see more stories on a specific topic? Be sure to let us know!
That's it from us, we'll catch you next week.