Renewable Energy and Office Working at the Core of Smart Building Developments
At present, many older building systems operate independently, and many are inherently inefficient as they lack the monitoring capability that would enable them to adapt effectively to different conditions or modes of operation. Critically, in the current environment, smart buildings must use renewable energy. Not only is this good for the environment, it can also substantially cut running costs.
Furthermore, as the world begins to plan life post-pandemic, smart buildings are an attraction to help get staff away from home working. The core of smart buildings is an integrated smart technology system which allows greater control over the buildings’ environment and operations; fostering productivity, improved performance and overall wellbeing of occupants. Smart buildings also deliver energy cost savings, space optimisation and minimising the environmental impact of buildings.
Advantages of Smart Buildings
The advantages that every company wants are reduced costs, long-term future proofing and whole-life costs. However, other more ergonomic benefits will include improved wellbeing and productivity of staff. This suggests that truly 'smart' buildings are those that deliver better environmental, social and economic conditions.
Concerns to Be Addressed
There are some concerns regarding the roll-out of smart technologies. It has been suggested that poorly implemented technologies can disempower occupants; taking away their control of the environment, and that a lack of suitable instructions or education may lead to the incorrect use of technology and the inefficient operation of buildings.
There are also concerns about the lack of privacy. There would typically be a cascade of security cameras at the entrance of the building, at the entrance of the lift, and at each exit point of the lift on each floor. These cameras are invaluable in the event of a security breach or theft of large items, but questions arise on whether employees would be happy with appearing on multiple cameras every day, with movement potentially being recorded and stored for months.
Security Key for Smart Building Design
Security is of primary importance in the design of a smart building. Buildings should not be able to be accessed by just any person. Intelligent planning would have been examined before use – especially where there are valuable products or sensitive information inside the building.
Below, we look at examples of how smart buildings will incorporate access permissions.
- Door access control restricts who can enter an area or room in a building or who can use a particular resource.
- More comprehensive access control solutions include products, such as electronic keypads and proximity readers. Physical access tools, such as fobs, can be managed by online or offline software.
- The Smart Building Ecosystem
- Forecast Summary
► Smart Buildings Market Research
Our latest research found:
- The number of buildings globally deploying smart building technologies will reach 115 million in 2026, from 45 million in 2022.
- This growth of over 150% reflects increasing demand for energy efficiency from businesses and residents alike, as energy costs spike.
- By enabling buildings to monitor and automate common functions, significant efficiency gains can be made, while improving the environment for workers and residents.
- Non-residential smart buildings will account for 90% of smart building spend globally in 2026; at a similar level to 2022.
- The global shipments of sensors used in smart buildings will exceed 1 billion annually in 2026 from 360 million in 2022; representing a growth of 204%.