The emergence of a rural construction boom

Analysis of data from more than 1,500 rural municipalities in North America uncovered an 87% increase in conversations about “Housing Developments” in the first four months of 2022 compared to the same period in 2020.

Are you ready for this opportunity? 

The North American way of life is changing. The COVID-19 pandemic handcuffed communities across the developed world and saw the focus of governments shift to public health in a way not seen since the early 20th century. The pandemic exposed, and in many ways accelerated, some of the biggest challenges facing municipal and regional authorities and the construction engineering industry. Shortages of labor, decreased productivity due to lockdowns, and increasing material costs have had a generational impact on municipal development and infrastructure renewal across North America.

While we in 2020 overall tracked 3,045 conversations about housing developments in North American municipalities with less than 25,000 constituents, 2021 saw 4,798 conversations, a staggering increase of 57%. 

In the coming decades, governments and regional authorities will have to adjust to respond to the needs of a growing population, changing and moving in unprecedented ways. For example, the rising cost of living in the largest cities in the United States and Canada has been driven primarily by an increasing cost of housing as those cities continue to grow. In some cases, the skyrocketing price of single-family homes sends young families and working-aged people away from those large cities for the first time in decades. 

Canadian economist and professor Mike Moffatt observed the shift from Toronto to southwestern Ontario in something he called the “exodus from Toronto”. This exodus is driven by people in their early 30s as costs for housing, daycare, and almost everything else continue to rise in Canada’s largest city. 

Regional and local administrations will be increasingly pressed to attract the investment, development and labor required to support this flight of working-aged families. As a result, infrastructure development will boom in these rural and suburban areas to house the new generation of residents and provide the transportation, telecommunication, and commercial services needed for growing communities.

Discovering rural

How can suburban and regional municipalities meet the needs of a generation shift in populations? Construction companies, engineering firms and developers will need to use data and technology to stay ahead of business leads that were easier to identify and track when growth was more condensed within larger urban centers. Now, these public sector business opportunities are dispersing to other smaller and previously overlooked communities.

With tens of thousands of regional, municipal and other administrative authorities across North America, having the technology to stay on top of public planning and development meetings is becoming critical. These meetings provide the earliest possible signals of projects that your business is best suited to compete for and secure. Planning discussions provide your team with a head-start, even before the RFP process begins. 

Construction companies, engineering firms and developers will need to use data and technology to stay ahead of business leads that were previously much easier to identify and track when growth was more condensed within larger urban centers.

Derrick Koenig, Founder & CPO of Ontopical

Technologies such as Ontopical can help your sales team see the earliest possible signal of upcoming business opportunities in North America’s fastest-growing metropolitan areas, not just the biggest cities.

If you want to win more business and get your construction company, engineering firm, architecture firm or development firm to the front of these opportunities – reach out to the Ontopical team to book your demo today.

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