Green will be the flavor of the day. Owners, architects, and developers will build green. We will do a better job of promoting concrete as a green product and will gain market share as a result. Concrete will also have a larger market share in response to issues like global warming, terrorism, seismic concerns, and our shrinking planet.
Research and development of new technologies will escalate in response to the smaller labor force. We will see the successors to laser screeds and self-consolidating concrete as the next tsunami of technology rolls in. Perhaps robotic trowel machines, with pressure-sensitive devices to read the concrete; other robotics for rebar placing and field bending and auto welding; something similar to a screed for structural slabs and slabs-on-deck; proximity sensors for danger zones; fail-safe smart boxes on all equipment.
We will laugh (in disbelief) at the safety practices of today, just as we now grimace at old photos of PPE-free construction workers seated on an I-beam dangling in the air.
Quality and service will gain a foothold over low bid as communication between all parties improves, more focus on customer service, and contractors held to a higher standard. As a result more work will be negotiated, performance and service will count for more, and the contractor who is a good business person and a good technician will rise to the top.
Read more prognostications by industry leaders on the next 50 years of concrete.