Construction Industry News: Effects of COVID-19

May 6, 2020

COVID-19 has impacted daily life across the world. Schools are closed, the travel industry has come to a halt, and people are working from home or furloughed left and right. As every aspect of the supply chain continues to be affected by the virus, the construction industry has been substantially impacted as well.

Slowdown in Non-Essential Projects

In an effort to slow the spread of the virus on job sites, many non-essential construction projects have been postponed. Boston became the first U.S. city to put a stop to all construction on March 16th, and other states soon followed. Pennsylvania and New York aren't allowing any construction whatsoever, while about a dozen states are permitting only construction deemed essential. Projects deemed "essential" vary from state to state and can include healthcare facilities, housing, and hotels.

The Upside

Fortunately, the construction industry is remaining strong. Hundreds of construction workers have been tasked with retrofitting hotels and other buildings in California and Washington — including the events center at CenturyLink Field, the Seattle Seahawks' stadium — into makeshift healthcare facilities to keep up with the growing need for hospital beds. While there's a slowdown in non-essential construction projects, there's an uptick in others.

Additionally, with most of the U.S. population working from home, a unique opportunity exists. Deferred construction projects can be started or resumed on roads that are normally too heavily trafficked and in office buildings that are typically occupied. For example, Florida is stepping up work on more than $2 billion in DOT projects.

Looking Ahead

The silver lining is that the effects of COVID-19 won't be permanent. While it’s true that COVID-19 has already caused a substantial economic downturn, Robert Dietz, chief economist for the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), predicts the economy will rebound by the end of the year.

Construction technology is also making tremendous strides in the wake of the virus' impact. Building inspections and appraisals are increasingly going virtual and project bidding is moving to a primarily online format as well.

During these trying times, in order for your business to stay ahead, it’s essential to continue bidding on projects. At PlanHub, we strive to provide general contractors and subcontractors with a streamlined bidding process, as well as keep you and your business updated with the latest industry news. For more construction news, or to learn more about our software and its features and benefits, contact us today.