Today’s architects’ have a wealth of building options to choose from, though metal has become a hot commodity for a broad spectrum of projects whether they are full-on metal or hybrid construction. So, why are more designers choosing metal? Because it is sustainable, versatile, durable, energy-efficient, eco-friendly, affordable, beautiful and presents a multitude of exciting solutions.
Because architects play such a critical role in the design and build process, METALCON is thrilled to announce a new program at this year’s show called, “The Architect’s Experience at METALCON.” We are currently working with two leading companies in education and training for architects to deliver a combined education and exhibit floor experience exclusively for architects. Help spread the word to the architect community – invite your architect colleagues to join us at METALCON 2020.
As Women in Construction Week 2020 continues, the timing couldn’t be more perfect for architecture’s highest honor, the Pritzker Prize, to be jointly awarded to two women! As announced in ArchDaily, “With more than 40 years of professional experience, Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara, partners and co-founders of Dublin-based Grafton Architects, are the first women to be jointly awarded the architecture’s highest honor. The 2020 Laureates, who are both educators and architects, are known for their powerful yet delicate approaches. Their contextual and modern interventions are very attentive to history, demonstrating high levels of sensitivity and craftsmanship.”
As reported by DesignandBuildwithMetal.com, the Metal Construction Association (MCA) has recognized North America’s most outstanding metal construction projects of 2019. Winners in six categories were announced at MCA’s Winter Meeting Awards Dinner held last month. This year’s judging panel of distinguished architects included James Theimer, Principal Architect, Trilogy Architecture; Mark Roddy, Lecturer in the Department of Design, California State University, Sacramento; and Erik Mehlman, Partner and Design Lead at BuildSense | Architecture + Construction.
The Chairman’s Awards go to the most exceptional buildings involving MCA member companies. The criteria include overall appearance, significance of metal in the project, innovative use of metal, and the role of metal in achieving project objectives. Here are the winners:
Green is the new black in building facades. Builders are turning to steel and metal cables and grids to create vertical gardens and green facades. According to ArchDaily‘s recent article, “Using the vertical plane to maintain plants in an urban setting is a coherent and common-sense solution, especially when there is little possibility of bringing green to the level of the people on the streets.”
In honor of President’s Day, MMM examines the monument that honors the first President of the United States. Upon its completion in 1884, the Washington Monument was the tallest building in the world. Designed by Robert Mills and eventually completed by Thomas Casey and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, it honors and memorializes George Washington at the center of the nation’s capital.
It’s been three years since METALCON’s last show in Las Vegas, and we can’t think of a better place to celebrate the show’s milestone 30th anniversary! METALCON 2020 will take place October 21-23, 2020, in the Las Vegas Convention Center. The headquarter hotel will once again be the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino, conveniently located adjacent to the convention center. If you are a frequent visitor to Vegas, you know the destination is always reinventing itself and creating new experiences for visitors. Here is a list of “what’s new” according to VisitLasVegas.com:
Metal Construction News has released their “2020 State of the Industry.” This year’s report highlights views from five industry professionals who examine how the industry will move forward into the next decade. They look at the uncertainty that is creeping into the market, and not just on the economics side, increasing sophistication of projects, improved technologies and more demanding clients which are forcing everyone in the industry to rethink and reevaluate their processes.
According to Construction Dive, “Aluminum components are being 3D printed with the resulting v-shaped nodes and connected squares of curtain wall forming a dramatic slope from the fourth to 40th floors. Aside from the impressive aesthetic, this method of production can also more easily accommodate last-minute changes.”
The article goes on to explain, “Structural engineer Magnusson Klemencic Associates (MKA) started out planning to use a reinforced concrete core for the building, said firm CEO Ron Klemencic, and about halfway into the project, it was clear that the tower would be too expensive and was going to take too long to build, making it economically unfeasible for the building’s owner, developer Wright Runstad & Co.” So after tabling the project for over a year, they needed an idea that would “jumpstart the project without busting the budget.”
According to the Metal Roofing Alliance (MRA), coping with climate extremes, getting creative and achieving better, longer-lasting performance that adds more ROI for the home improvement dollar are all top of mind for U.S. and Canadian homeowners this year. MRA reports that the top five key style and performance trends in the U.S. and Canada include:
While others may be skiing on snow-capped mountains this winter, residents of Copenhagen may be skiing on the roof of a building! Making the “top ten list of innovative buildings of 2019” by New Atlas, CopenHill (aka Amager Bakke), by Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), is a waste-to-energy power plant AND a ski slope that opened last year in Copenhagen, Denmark. Eleven years in the making, the building showcases the architectural firm’s trademark ingenuity and out-of-the-box thinking.
For Magnificent Metal Monday, let’s look ahead into the New Year with ArchDaily’s Top 20 Most Anticipated Projects for 2020. Designed across a wide range of scales, they represent a mix of interconnected landscapes, museums, and the world’s newest skyscrapers located across five continents, with many under construction for multiple years. Three of these projects are new skyscrapers joining the skylines of three major US cities including Chicago, San Francisco and New York.
One of the more highly anticipated projects for the New Year is Expo 2020 Dubai. Organized every five years, this will be the first to be held in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia region and will opinion October 20, 2020 (10/20/20). The world expo lasts six months and is created as a global destination for millions of people to share ideas, showcase innovation, encourage collaboration and celebrate human ingenuity. ArchDaily reports, “The United Arab Emirates and Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, selected the theme “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future,” and is organized around ideas of sustainability, mobility and opportunity.
Magnificent Metal Monday takes us over to the land of Northern Lights, Fjords and Reindeers. Appearing in ArchDaily‘s list of Top 2019 Projects, “The Twist” opened this Fall as an inhabitable bridge torqued at its center, forming a new journey and art piece within the Kistefos Sculpture Park in Jevnaker, Norway.”
According to CNN, “The Twist is a hybrid spanning several traditional categories: It’s a museum, it’s a bridge, it’s an inhabitable sculpture,” says Bjarke Ingels, Founding Partner & Creative Director, BIG. Kistefos Sculpture Park is located at the site of a former wood pulp mill and has been a staple of the Norwegian cultural scene for the past two decades.
Magnificent Metal Monday (MMM) takes us to the “Big Apple” this Monday (only fitting on this “post-holiday Monday given that it’s home to the annual Thanksgiving Macy’s parade!). The Shed, a new Center for the Arts, is located in New York City’s Hudson Yards and was designed by architects Diller Scofidio + Renfro and Rockwell Group. Time Magazine rated it one of the Best Architecture Projects of 2019, as reported recently by ArchDaily.
We highlight Vegas again in this week’s Magnificent Metal Monday (MMM). While Musk’s underground tram (METALCON Blog Issue Nov 18) may not be finished in time for METALCON 2020, the new $1.9B Allegiant stadium will be! Construction Dive takes an inside look into the status of the project, on track to be completed by summer 2020.
Earlier this year, a 150-foot spiral observation deck opened in Denmark and is being touted as an “architectural masterpiece.” Made of a naturally weathered corten steel and locally sourced oak, the structure was designed to blend in with its natural surroundings, but its giant, twisting frame is certainly a sight to behold for those who happen upon it. Time Magazine has named it to its 2019 list of top 100 places to visit in the world!
Located less than one hour’s drive south of Copenhagen, Camp Adventures Forest Tower is a hulking, nearly 150-foot tall spiral tower nestled in the Gisselfeld Klosters Forest. It offers visitors a 360-degree view over the trees, hills, lakes and meadows that make up the natural landscape. The tower and boardwalk opened to the public at the end of March and welcomed more than 2,500 visitors on its first day.
For more on the tower’s architecture and how it was constructed, click HERE.
What has 1,100 tons of reinforcing steel (the same weight as 55 whale sharks) and 206 tons of structural steel (about 8,240 emperor penguins)? The new $100 million expansion at the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, Georgia, that’s what! The largest aquarium in the western hemisphere is staged to grow even bigger with the expansion expected to be completed in fall 2020.
METALCON 2019 will meet in Pittsburgh, “the Steel City,” for the first time in its 29 show history this week! Once known as the gritty, albeit even “dirty” city … now known for its picturesque, foodie, techie, artsy, progressive and sporty vibe! I rarely get personal in these blog posts but having been to Pittsburgh several times within this past decade, I can tell you it’s all true and I cannot wait to see our METALCON attendees enjoy the city!
As the expression goes, “timing is everything!” Published this week by ArchDaily.com in partnership with Metropolis, they provide us with an in-depth look at Pittsburgh … home of METALCON 2019! In two weeks, thousands of exhibitors and attendees in the metal construction industry will gather in the “Steel City” for the first time in its 29 year show history. Chosen for its illustrious history in the steel and metal making industry, Pittsburgh was also selected as this year’s show location based on many of the items cited in this article. In their latest volume of Imagining the Modern: Architecture and Urbanism of Pittsburgh Renaissance, editors Chris Grimley, Michael Kubo, and Rami el Samahy explore the reasons behind the Pittsburgh’s revival earning a status of “renaissance“.
METALCON 2019 will roll into the “Steel City” in five weeks for the first time in its show history and be welcomed by Pittsburgh-based industry giants and this year’s premier sponsors, United States Steel Corporation (U.S. Steel) and PPG. Their names are permanent fixtures in the city and also in the skyline. In an article by Bright Hub Engineering, “Today taller buildings have emerged in the city, yet these two buildings remain popular because of their unique design and engineering material, and the material used for their construction and energy efficient design continues to make them popular among engineers and architects.” Magnificent Metal Monday (MMM) takes a deeper look at both of these buildings.
Magnificent Metal Monday travels to Pittsburgh, PA, the location of METALCON 2019, for a look at a unique three-story home built in one of the city’s dense urban neighborhoods. Designed by David W. Nitchkey, a principal at CORE Architects of Pittsburgh, he opted for the use of exposed fastener panels from McElroy Metal for the home’s exterior.
Nitchkey’s home appeared in a recent issue of DesignandBuildwithMetal.com as a “featured project.” Nitchkey explains, “My wife and I both wanted to live in a contemporary urban home, reflecting a modern design on both the exterior and the interior. We chose metal to create the contemporary industrial aesthetic of the exterior. Beyond aesthetics, the exposed fastener metal panel system provided an economical solution and the material is basically maintenance free. After maintaining a large 1950s era suburban home for 14 years, we were ready to spend less time on exterior maintenance and more time enjoying the benefits of living in a city neighborhood.” Part of their decision to use metal was also to pay homage to the city’s steeped history in steel and metal making.
The home measures 2,500 square feet on a narrow 20-foot by 60-foot lot. “As a designer, I looked at the exterior cladding as an exercise in graphic design,” Nitchkey says. “The dimensional profiles, direction of the panel patterns, panel sizes and seaming, and exposed fastener colors, all became part of the layers of the design. Conceptually, the first floor horizontal U-Panels in a Charcoal color, provide a dark base to ground the structure and create a platform to support the silver Galvalume volume of the second and third floors, clad in vertical U-Panels. To provide a visual interest, ‘the wedge’ utilizes horizontal Mega Rib panels in Regal White. The added depth of these panels contrasts nicely against the shallower U-Panels.
Abreez Contracting of Pittsburgh installed the McElroy panels: 1,140 square feet of U-Panels in Charcoal, 3,408 square feet of U-Panels in unfinished Galvalume, 360 square feet of Mega-Rib panels in Regal White and 162 square feet of Matrix soffit panels in unfinished Galvalume.
McElroy Metal markets metal roofing, siding, and substructural products for architectural, residential, commercial, and industrial applications. McElroy has 13 manufacturing facilities across the United States. You can visit McElroy Metals and see their latest product line in Booth #1740 at METALCON 2019.
Magnificent Metal Monday travels to Champagne, France, where ancient history meets modern sustainability. Instead of tearing down and rebuilding, check out this “green renovation of a midcentury monstrosity.” As featured this week in Redshift by Autodesk, Aurélien Leriche, architect manager of Paris-based firm OuyOut, saw an opportunity to propose a green renovation for CDER, a management and accounting association, when they wanted to expand their offices in Épernay, the capital of Champagne.
Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin on the Moon and an image of Buzz Aldrin’s bootprint from the Apollo 11 mission. Image Credit: NASA
“One giant leap for mankind … ” This past weekend, the world celebrated 50 years since the the first man stepped foot on the moon. In a BBC News report, “NASA marked the anniversary by streaming footage of the launch online, giving a new generation a chance to see the historic moment that was watched by half a billion people 50 years ago. At the moment the spacecraft landed, Apollo 11 commander Neil Armstrong said: “Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed.”
Magnificent Metal Monday take us to London, England, where a 23-m-long and 10-m-high “Neuron Pod” has opened at the science learning center at Queen Mary University of London’s campus in the area of Whitechapel. The Guardian reports, “Standing like an intergalactic porcupine, covered with long glowing quills that sway gently in the breeze, it is a startling thing to encounter in this unremarkable corner of hospital buildings and curry houses.” The structure was built from 13 pieces of weathering steel that were welded together on site.
In a city where “encores” are a nightly occurrence, Magnificent Metal Monday takes us to New York City where PPG has received their own “encore” at the Jacob Javits Convention Center. Featured in a recent issue of one of METALCON’s partner publications, DesignandBuildwithMetal.com, “PPG Duranar® coatings were selected to reprise their role as the metal coating of choice for the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in Manhattan.”
After wrapping up two weeks of European travel, I couldn’t help but marvel at some of the more modern metal structures juxtaposed against historical thousand year old structures. For Magnificent Metal Monday we’ll travel to Dublin, Ireland, where one metal structure in particular caught my eye – there in the middle of Dublin’s historical town centre stands “The Spire,” a 120 meter high stainless steel spire.
The Dublin Spire, also known as the “Monument of Light,” was the winning entry in an architectural competition to provide a replacement for Nelson’s Pillar which was blown up in 1966. Nelson’s Pillar was a large granite column capped by a statue of Horatio Nelson, built in the centre of Dublin’s well known O’Connell Street. Nelson’s Pillar was completed in 1809 when Ireland was part of the United Kingdom; it survived until March 1966, when it was severely damaged by explosives planted by Irish republicans.
The column was originally dedicated to the memory of Nelson, which was erected in 1808; the foundation stone having been laid by the Duke of Richmond, Lord Lieutenant, on the 5th of February in that year. William Wilkins of Norwich designed it, but the statue of Nelson is by an Irish sculptor, Thomas Kirk, R.H.A. It was blown up in 1966 in the middle of the night, but the head of Nelson has been preserved by the Dublin Civic Museum.
The Dublin Spire is one hundred and twenty metres tall, making it by far the tallest structure in Dublin’s city centre. It is three metres wide at the base and tapers to a 15 centimentre wide beacon at the top. The steel underwent “shot peening” in order to subtly reflect the light falling on it. The pattern around the base of the Spire is based on a core sample of earth and rock formation taken from the ground where the spire stands. The pattern was applied by bead blasting the steel through rubber stencil masks whose patterns were created by water jet cutting based on core sample drawings supplied by the contractor.The top section is perforated and lit by small LEDs. The structure looks different under every lighting condition. At night, its stainless steel surface resembles black satin, while early morning and last light gave it a steely blue colour. In daytime under bright sunlight, it doesn’t look real from a distance, instead it looks like a computer simulation.
As we passed it on our tour, I wondered what this sleek steel structure was doing in the middle of this historical city. Our guide settled my curiosity and explained that the modern day spire is thought to serve as a symbol of moving Ireland forward into the next century.