A Toronto team is among the first-place winners at a global hackathon hosted by real estate development company, Oxford Properties Group.
Over 500 developers gathered for the hackathon with the aim to disrupt the design and construction process of commercial real estate buildings. Hosted concurrently across three continents, participants in London, Sydney, Boston, and Toronto spent 48 hours wrestling with the most pressing challenges in commercial real estate development. The participants were divided into 50 teams with the top three in each city taking home a share of the $20,000 USD ($26,000 CAD) in prize money.
The winning teams were judged based on how their solution supported and advanced commercial real estate development.
“The commercial real estate industry is primed for disruption. The process we use to design and construct buildings has not materially changed in almost a century,” said Dean Hopkins, COO at Oxford. “This is why we invited people to come in and hack us at this Global Hackathon competition. If we can disrupt ourselves first, we can help guide the industry into the future. We hope that the ideas and solutions we have discovered through the hackathon will inspire the industry to explore new ways of driving innovation through technology.”
The Toronto region winners were Team Build Stream (Kartik Budhiraja, Sukhy Dhami, Jishnu Kidile, Abhinav Meda, Abbas Rattansi, Raisa Sayed) with their development of an application to collect real-time customer-generated data to create experience driven user personas. This data helps to incorporate the wants and needs of a building’s end users in the design and development process.
Among other first-place regional winners were Team Kaven 207 from Boston, creating a web-based solution that leverages historical building design data and best practices; Team Oxford City from Sydney, developing a collaborative and automated materials cost management tool that uses AI; and Team Data Space from London, developing a contractor involvement program that allows collaborative and agile working to be started from the onset of the design process.
The winning teams were judged based on their solution, how it supported and advanced commercial real estate development, its impact on the end users, and its feasibility.
“As a global company, it is important for us to hear perspectives and ideas from across the world,” said Hopkins. “The solutions the participants came up with were unique and addressed issues the industry is contending with on a daily basis. Oxford has a vested interest in pushing the boundaries of the industry, and we will do our part to drive innovation and speed up the commercial development process.”
The Hackathon is part of Oxford’s broader mission to spur new innovation in the global construction industry, which is expected to exceed $15.5 trillion by 2030.