What do senior housing and climate change have in common? They are two “megatrends” that will influence construction in the 21st century, according to recent findings from an international research firm.
Construction will play a significant role in helping the planet cope with both aging populations and climate changes, says a report from Lux Research “Future of Construction: Influence of Megatrends.“
As a result, the senior housing construction market is projected to more than double to $127 billion in 2023 in the G20 nations alone, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 8% over the next 10 years.
Much of the costs associated with senior housing construction will be driven by several factors, including rising healthcare costs and the desire for more innovative technologies that foster aging-in-place, the study notes.
“Driven by the need to combat unsustainable health-care costs, innovations such as building-integrated sensors, modular construction and building automation will enable the change from assisted living to aging-in-place,” writes Aditya Ranade, Lux Research senior analyst and the lead author of the report.
Even building features that promote the health and wellness of senior living residents will also drive the sector’s market for construction, such as building materials to reduce exposure of vulnerable seniors to allergens and infections.
“Senior populations are one of the two most vulnerable groups for spread of infectious disease, the other being children under the age of 2,” Ranade writes. “Preventative measures such as use of biocidal paints and allergen capturing carpets can help in all buildings, but are especially necessary in senior housing.”
Environmental issues like global warming and rising sea levels will also prompt increases in the global construction market, particularly in North America and Asia-Pacific, the study also suggests.
The construction of stronger sea walls and levees are projected to soar to a $9 billion business by 2030, according to Lux Research’s findings. While North American and Asia-Pacific will drive this market over the next 10 years, research suggests Europe will catch up after 2023.
“Aging populations and rising health care costs are spurring innovations in senior housing, while warming oceans and rising sea levels are creating the need for next-generation sea walls and other climate-resilient construction,” said Ranade.
Written by Jason Oliva