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Smart buildings will affect you • from the editor

May 1, 2021 | By Anthony Capkun

May 1, 2021 – Smart buildings promise owners access to a near limitless stream of data, but what is being done with it, and is anyone actually using the data for anything useful?

More importantly, where do you—the electrical professional—fit into the smart building landscape?

Along with our sister magazines On-Site and HPAC, Electrical Business hosted a panel of construction leaders from EllisDon, Black & McDonald and Modern Niagara—Colin Flock, Erica Brabon and Sam Boyajian—to explore the ways in which smart buildings are forcing jobsites and their stakeholders to evolve.

And explore they did!


As I watched this session (and I hope you do, too), I picked up on some important takeaways. First, and perhaps most importantly, you cannot have a smart building without a robust network infrastructure. Period. Which means that, as smart buildings become increasingly desired, someone is going to have to install and commission the facility’s nervous system… why not you?

And I believe it was Sam who said that successful construction—especially in the smart building realm—requires partnerships. You may need to step out of your comfort zone and start engaging with non-traditional suppliers (i.e. the tech guys) to learn more about low-voltage cabling and fiber, PoE, access points, wireless networks, etc.

And look to other sources for information, too—many of which are easily accessible online, and likely free—such as webinars (like the one I’m describing here), EBPowerCon, this magazine and its newsletters, and so on.

When you combine all of these sources, you end up with a pretty decent picture of where we are now, and where construction is going. And if you’re thinking AI and machine learning, well… I don’t want to spoil it.

I encourage you to check out the recording “Smart buildings: how do they affect YOU?” below. Then, no matter where you are in the construction chain, start thinking about how smart buildings will affect you.

— Anthony Capkun, acapkun@ebmag.com

This column—along with other great content—appears in the April 2021 edition of Electrical Business Magazine. Even more back issues are located in our Digital Archive.

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