5 Engineering and Architecture Trends in 2021

2020 was a year of pause and transition. A time of innovation and pivoting. Professionals were asked to halt work and new methods were put into practice. Many of which are here to stay. As we settle into 2021, it is evident that certain trends will continue to flourish.

*Information for this blog post was provided from an article cited below.


1. A Heightened Concern with Sustainability and Climate Resilience

Innovative green alternatives and improvements to infrastructures with regards to climate change is a key focus for 2021. The Alliance for a Sustainable Future – a joint effort between the U.S. Conference of Mayors and the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions – released a 2020 report citing that 60% of surveyed cities across the U.S. have launched or significantly expanded a climate initiative or policy. Displaying a proactive approach in the importance of protecting our natural environment and enhancing existing infrastructure resilience to climate change.

2.Rising investment in bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure

Stemming from the same climate cautious mindset expressed in trend number one, biking and pedestrian infrastructures are greener alternatives that continue to grow in popularity.

3. Technology brings better ways to visualize projects

Visualization technologies, such as 3D modeling, gained traction as viable solutions during the challenging year of 2020. However, the benefits of these tools prove that they will continue to play a part moving forward. 3D renderings and animations offer a better understanding of a project while it is still in the beginning phases of design. Offering earlier problem solving solutions and overall lower costs and higher satisfaction of a project.

4. Virtual public engagement is here to stay

Virtual public engagement is an efficient and price conscious alternative to in person engagements. With more tools available that ever before virtual engagements and events will last well beyond present circumstances.

Example of virtual tools include:

  • Drone filming and photography
  • 360-degree high-definition webcams
  • Virtual meetings, webinars, and video conferencing
  • Dedicated websites
  • Strategic social media
  • Email outreach
  • Online surveys

5. The need for creative, multi-family land developments

The housing marketing is fluctuating. People across generations are in search of houses in more rural areas, leaving cities behind. However, the vast amenities and cultural experiences are still desired. “This high demand paired with the limited supply creates an opportunity for private developers to explore creative options such as duplexes, multiplexes, bungalow courts, townhomes and live-work spaces.”

Do you agree with these trend forecasts? Do you see them as beneficial or detrimental to the engineering industry? Follow us on Instagram and LinkedIn and let us know what you think.

1 Broses, M., Crow, B. and Wells, P., 2021. 8 Trends in Architecture and Engineering for 2021. [online] SEH®. Available at: <https://www.sehinc.com/news/8-trends-architecture-and-engineering-2021> [Accessed 7 April 2021].

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