GoVertical presents

Vertical ML/AI Startup Creation Weekend

Hosted by Madrona Venture Labs & TiE Seattle

As a free benefit for participants, we would like to extend an invitation to the Amazon SageMaker workshop on Feb 14 from 1p-5p.


Construction resources

Welcome to the Construction vertical page! In order to make the most of the time the weekend of the event, please review our key educational materials and data sets. 

Be Prepared! Start thinking through what types of data could power your business and product ideas. Often times a combination of multiple, disparate data sets can yield the most ingenious ideas and solutions!

Panel videos

The following videos were recording during the April 19 Panel event. You may wish to reference them in preparation of the weekend ML event.

ML Panel moderated by Dan Weld. Panelists: Xin Luna Dong, Yejin Choi & Kevin Jamieson


VC Panel moderated by Jay Bartot. Panelists: Tim Porter, Mike Miller, Pradeep Rathinam & Ankur Teredesai


Sector analysis

Vertical description

Construction is the work of making or building something. It starts with planning, design, and financing; it continues until the project is built and ready for use. Large-scale construction requires collaboration across multiple disciplines. A project manager normally manages the job, and a construction manager, design engineer, construction engineer or architect supervises it. Those involved with the design and execution must consider zoning requirements, environmental impact of the job, scheduling, budgeting, construction-site safety, availability and transportation of building materials, logistics, inconvenience to the public caused by construction delays and bidding. The construction sector is a broad sector composed of many segments such as infrastructure, commercial, and residential construction. Residential seems to be the most interesting but ideas could come anywhere from furniture to floating bridges.

How big an opportunity space is this, how is it growing, and what’s driving that growth?  

The US construction market is estimated to be $1.32 trillion. The global market is $17 trillion. Growing at 7.6% annually driven by residential market trends and the economy.

What are the segments/pockets?

There are many ways to segment the focus area. The fastest growing construction segments are single family, office, education, public buildings and roads/bridges. You can also look at it in terms of materials used. Lumber, Gypsum, Cement, and Aggregates markets are growing the fastest. Self Healing products are experience extremely high growth as well. The economy’s strength is a major driving trend of construction.

What is the technology spend and trend in this category, or the revenue growth rate of companies in the category (whichever is applicable)?

Gartner ranks Construction as dead last in IT investment compared to other industries. Construction revenues are expected to grow at 4.5% dependent on population, government spending, and economic health.

What are the proof points that success may be rewarded?

The top 10 construction companies all have over $5 billion a year in revenue. Total market revenue is very dispersed providing an opportunity. (72k companies in CA)

At a high level, what problems are there to be solved using technology?  

What current trends are driving change in this category?  

How specifically can ML/AI change the game in this category?  

Investment hypothesis / rationale

The market is massive and full of universal problems. Because of the lack of technology in construction there are likely opportunities to digitize and improve process by utilizing ML/AI.

What adverse conditions / headwinds are there for a play in this space? What makes it difficult?

Data sets

Your novel business idea should be grounded in real-world data with plausible machine-learning/analytics on top. We've compiled a collection of datasets from which to gain inspiration. Note that you are not restricted to basing your idea on the data sets below. You may discover other open source data sets that inspire your creativity or you may bring your own proprietary data sets if you wish.

Many of the datasets below are from Kaggle, Figure-Eight (Crowdflower), Data.World, etc. The advantage of these datasets is that many have been cleaned and normalized and are ready to be explored with ML and data science tools. Note that the use of these datasets is often intended for research purposes only. Be sure to read any associated license agreements to understand if there are commercial restrictions if you plan to continuing using the data after the workshop is over.

Sample Data Sets

From City of Seattle Open Data

All building permits issued or in progress within the city of Seattle.

The Department of Building and Safety issues permits for the construction, remodeling, and repair of buildings and structures in the City of Los Angeles.

New school projects (Capacity) and Capital Improvement Projects (CIP) currently under Construction.

All permitted construction work are subject to inspection by authorized Building and Safety inspectors. The permit applicant notifies Building and Safety when the work is ready for inspection.

US Census provides national and regional data on the number of new housing units authorized by building permits; authorized, but not started; started; under construction; and completed. The data are for new, privately-owned housing units, excluding "HUD-code" manufactured (mobile) homes.