BEX 2020 Year in Review

By Tasha Anderson for AZBEX
2020 has been a roller coaster ride for the BEX team. We’ve celebrated milestones like our 10-year Anniversary in February, and the launch of DATABEX, the new and improved version of our online searchable database, in May. We’ve also adapted our day-to-day operations – like most A/E/C firms have – by working from home; introducing a short, weekly video briefly discussing projects and upcoming opportunities in the industry; and adding a COVID Roundup Section in our Magazine so our readers could stay up to date on the latest pandemic information.
While our Magazine still strives to provide the most detailed and accurate information on projects going through planning and development, some of our content had shifted in 2020 to bring some insight into how COVID has impacted the industry, as well as how firms managed to adapt their operations to maintain business. Below are just some of the major pieces we provided this year structured by category:
Leading Market Series
Beginning in April 2020, the BEX Leading Market Series events were moved to a virtual format due to the pandemic. While most of the LMS topics still revolved around discussions about new opportunities and projects currently in development, a reoccurring theme was to get the panel’s insight on what trends they see in their respective markets and how they believe COVID-19 is affecting their business.
With the exception of hospitality, office and retail, it seemed the consensus was that everyone was still busy and are, “cautiously optimistic” about the future. Even the owners’ perspective seemed to be optimistic that business in 2021 would be somewhat better than 2020.
Click on the links below for a further look into some of the top 2020 LMS topics:

COVID-19 Impact on the Construction Industry
The big question in 2020 was, “How will the construction industry fare during the pandemic?” BEX President and Founder, Rebekah Morris put on her detective hat and did a bunch of research to give us all an answer.
Turns out, construction still experienced a significant year-over-year growth and firms were able to adapt their business operations quickly, despite other industries pausing due to COVID-19 restrictions enforced earlier this year. This was, in part, thanks to Governor Doug Ducey for deeming construction an essential activity, and the climbing demand for more hospital beds and industrial space.
Click on the links below for a further look into some of the top 2020 trend pieces:

Some Top Projects Reported on in 2020
While some of our content changed this year, we still reported on many projects going through planning and development. While we do collect project updates from several other media sources, we can’t help but get excited when we can share details on a project with our readers first, or as we like to call it, a BEXclusive!
Below are just a few of the top projects we reported on in 2020:

  • Plans Submitted to Scottsdale for Skysong 6 – a 340KSF Class A office building to be constructed as an addition to the massive 1.2MSF Skysong mixed-use project. Butler Design Group is the architect and Layton Construction is the general contractor.
  • Maintaining Healthy $1B+ Project Count – A recap of the largest projects in Arizona with a $1B+ total construction cost. Projects include data centers, master-planned projects, light rail extensions, manufacturing facilities and more.
  • Flagstaff Requests DB Firm for Overpass Project – A $52M bridge overpass to be constructed in central Flagstaff. While the City is no longer requesting RFQs, they have not yet selected a design-build firm for the project.
  • 224-Acre Mixed-Use Hub Proposed for Goodyear – A 224-acre master-planned commerce, retail and office park at the SWC of L-303 and I-10. The project will be separated into three districts. A general contractor has still not been selected.
  • Maricopa County P&Z Reviews 3 Solar Projects – An update of three large solar projects to be located throughout Maricopa County, including the Maricopa Solar and Storage Project, Sun Streams Expansion and Vulcan Solar Project.
  • Mixed-Use Towers Planned for Tempe Train Depot Site – A 17-story office tower and 18-story hotel tower with ground floor retail and parking garage. The project is expected to be heard at Tempe’s January 14th City Council meeting.
  • Banner Plans Women’s Tower Expansion in Mesa – A five-story medical tower expansion at the Banner Desert Medical Center Campus in Mesa. Cuningham Group Architecture, Inc. is the design firm and DPR Construction is the general contractor. Construction is still expected to start in early 2021.

Moving Forward
With 2020 in the rearview mirror, BEX can look ahead to 2021, starting with the virtual Construction Activity Forecast event on January 15th. The BEX research team will present total activity, broken down by market sector, as well as provide the top owners, architects, and general contractors in each space. We look forward to bringing more valuable content to our subscribers and are excited for another year of serving the A/E/C Community.

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