In this Private Industry Brief Special Issue we take a deeper look into digital infrastructure which includes data centers and telecommunications markets. The World Economic Forum reports that the digital economy will account for 26% of GDP by 2040, while it accounts for 15% today. It also expects technology to reshape healthcare, mobility and energy production in the next 10 years.
According to FMI’s Second Quarter 2022 Engineering & Construction Report, a surge of investment is expected in office and communication markets. The annual design and construction spending for the office market is expected to grow to $95 billion by 2026, up 6% year over year from $81 billion in 2023. Data centers are a subset of office and commercial real estate asset classes. Drivers in this market include acceptance of remote work, emerging technologies, and crypto miners (think Bitcoin). The Infrastructure Investment Jobs Act (IIJA) also allocates $65 billion in federal funding to broadband infrastructure, the second largest market to receive funding after transportation ( see allocation on page 3 ). This includes wireless infrastructure to provide reliable high speed internet and other telecommunications services, including cables, fiber optics, wiring and other permanent (internal to the structure) infrastructure. Many firms count data
center developers and owners as well as telecommunications companies, as major clients.