Artificial intelligence has potential to remove many pain points from warehousing and material handling, giving AEC professionals a hope of lower material prices and reliable deliveries.

Here’s how AI can help ease supply-chain woes:

“Predictive analytics and demand forecasting scrutinize large quantities of data from many sources to deliver insights regarding potential procurement delays and inventory challenges. Supplier selection provides a qualitative assessment of suppliers based on their reliability, delivery speeds, and product quality. Route optimization and fleet management enable increased efficiency in transportation costs, including fuel consumption and carbon footprint reduction. Risk mitigation offers a holistic supply chain-monitoring function, alerting contractors early to potential budget- and timeline-related surprises,” writes Blaine Brownell, an architect and materials researcher, in ARCHITECT.

Experts anticipate AI will give material handling precisely the shot in the arm it needs. One AI platform, Kojo, boasts reducing manual data entry by 75 percent, construction waste by 90 percent, and material costs by $22 million.

While AI software advances by leaps and bounds, helping materials get where they’re needed, faster and cheaper, the facilities where they’re stored in the meantime are undergoing a transformation of their own.

With many warehouses and logistics centers far removed from natural gas utilities, they’re tapping into clean-burning propane to power generators, forklifts, space heating, and even EV charging stations.

“We’re quickly becoming a two-fuel society regarding material handling,” says PERC CEO Tucker Perkins in an interview with The New Warehouse.

With renewable propane on the horizon, these facilities can operate more sustainably with the potential to meet zero-emissions goals.

Read the full ARCHITECT article here.

Listen to The New Warehouse podcast here.