Category Archives: steel

Pittsburgh – A Place you Will Remember

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!

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METALCON 2019 – UPDATE ALERT

With only three (business) days to go until we officially open METALCON 2019, here are some exciting show updates regarding the CONTECH technology hub, conference schedule and the METALCON APP. METALCON 2019 is taking place in the “Steel City” of Pittsburgh next week, October 16-19, 2019!

CONTECH

We are excited to announce that technology companies, Dronegenuity and Felux, have been added to further enhance this new feature at METALCON.

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“Postcard Pittsburgh: An Urban Renewal of an Underrated American 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 Renaissanceeditors Chris Grimley, Michael Kubo, and Rami el Samahy explore the reasons behind the Pittsburgh’s revival earning a status of “renaissance“.

Metal Construction Association Announces Formation of MCM Alliance

Photo credit: Metal Construction Association

As reported by DesignandBuildWithMetal.com this week, “The Metal Construction Association (MCA) has created a new group focused on increasing awareness of Metal Composite Material (MCM) for the architectural building envelope. The MCM Alliance supports product performance testing, initiates research, and promotes education and actions to influence public policies for the utilization and growth of MCM in the marketplace.”

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MMM – Dubai’s Museum of the Future

Credit: Killa Design

MMM (Magnificent Metal Monday) has its “eye” on the future. Designed by Killa Design and scheduled to open before the end of the year, the Museum of the Future is a complete deviation from the Dubai skyline filled with skyscrapers. The Museum has a torus shape (a donut shape) – a gleaming silver oval with an open center. As stated in an article published by Redshift by Autodesk, “The building looks almost like an eye keeping watch over this growing city, the largest in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).”

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METALCON 2019 – NEWS UPDATE

The following news was released to the national media this week announcing METALCON’S Keynote Presenters as Pittsburgh sports icons, former Pittsburgh Steeler Rocky Bleier and former Pittsburgh Penguin Bryan Trottier. Presentations are being brought to METALCON by long-time partners’ United States Steel Corporation (U.S. Steel) and PPG, both title sponsors headquartered in Pittsburgh.

CONTECH – What is it?

You’ve been hearing us mention it lately and it’s regularly mentioned in the industry trades, but what is it? Quite simply defined as CON – Construction … TECH – Technology! It is the “wave of the future” and it will be featured up close and in depth at METALCON 2019! This new technology hub on the show floor is being brought to you by United States Steel Corporation.

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MMM – Scotland’s Falkirk Wheel – an Engineering Marvel

The Falkirk Wheel; photo credit: Wikipedia

Magnificent Metal Monday travels “across the pond” today to highlight Scotland’s Falkirk Wheel, the only fully rotating boat lift in the world. According to UK based Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), the wheel was built as part of the £85.4m Millennium link project to reunite the Forth and Clyde and Union Canals in Scotland. The canals had previously been linked by a staircase of 11 locks which took nearly a day to pass through. The locks were dismantled in 1933. Before the Falkirk Wheel was constructed, it wasn’t possible to get from the Union Canal to the Forth and Clyde by boat. It now takes about 10 minutes for a boat to be lifted from the Forth and Clyde to the aqueduct 24m above that leads to the Union Canal. The Wheel opened in 2002.

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Metal Panels Popularity on the Rise

Have you noticed how so many of the stories in the industry trades have been about metal panels lately? It’s hard to keep up!  Metal panels are clearly a popular solution in the construction world given their aesthetics, the variety and flexibility of materials and cost effectiveness. Members of MCA’s Insulated Metal Panel Group will be on hand at METALCON 2019 next month on the Exhibit Floor as well as offering their expertise during educational sessions (details below). There are too many stories to include them all, but here are some recent ones.

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MMM – U.S. Steel Tower and PPG Place are Engineering Marvels in Pittsburgh

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.

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METALCON 2019 – NEWS UPDATE

The following news was released to the national media this week announcing CONTECH, METALCON’s new construction technology hub, sponsored by United States Steel Corporation.

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MMM – Metal Buildings Part of Every Day Life

While I was picking my daughter up at the gym the other night, it dawned on me that we have spent countless hours in metal buildings over the past 7 years. With approximately 400 hours of practice per year times nearly 7 years plus gym meets, we are talking nearly 3000 hours! Then I began to realize that these metal buildings are everywhere and truly woven into people’s everyday lives. From gymnasiums, churches and schools, to sports arenas, warehouses, airplane hangars, and retail infrastructures (cue: Amazon distribution centers) … so for Magnificent Metal Monday today, let’s explore what makes these metal structures so functional.

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METALCON Registration is OPEN!

The moment you’ve been waiting for (and that we’ve been blogging about) … METALCON REGISTRATION IS OPEN! 95 days until we all convene in Pittsburgh, PA, October 16-18! Industry icons, U.S. Steel and PPG Industrial Coatings, call Pittsburgh home and they are this year’s premier corporate sponsors alongside Metal Construction News. Come join us to see how America’s “steel city” will make the perfect backdrop for METALCON 2019. Continue reading to learn why you should be at METALCON 2019 …

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MMM – Firing up the Neurons

The Neuron Pod is a three-legged steel structure that has been designed to mimic a neuron—a nerve cell that processes and transmits information by electrical and chemical signaling. Courtesy of: FF Journal, the Magazine for Today’s Metal Fabricating & Forming Technologies

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.

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MMM – Encore for PPG’s Duranar® Coatings

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.”

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MMM – Dublin’s Stainless Steel Spire

Photo credit: Publicart.ie

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 original Nelson’s Pillar honoring Horatio Nelson, a British flag officer for the Royal Navy.

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.

MMM – Singapore’s New Airport Shines

Summer is here and that means traveling through airports. According to Forbes, “This summer U.S. airlines are anticipating that a record 257.4 million will take to the skies between June 1 and August 31, up 3.4% compared to a year ago.” Airport construction projects continue to make headlines, but according to the New York Times, one in particular is shining as the “new jewel.” Singapore’s Changi Airport hopes to be a destination in itself and remove some of the stress that traveling can bring. The 10-story engineering marvel contains a forest, indoor waterfall, and more than 280 stores and restaurants. Magnificent Metal Monday takes a closer look at what it took to create this gem.

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Theater Education Schedule Announced for METALCON 2019

METALCON’s commitment to the industry goes far beyond exhibits. The show not only offers one on one interactions with exhibitors, but also offers opportunities to learn from industry experts. The METALCON team is excited to announce this year’s “line-up” for the PPG Theatre, sponsored by PPG which is headquartered in the host city, Pittsburgh. In addition PPG is sponsoring Bryan Trottier, former professional ice hockey player for the Pittsburgh Penguins and seven-time Stanley Cup winner, as one of the keynote speakers. A full schedule of general sessions on key industry topics will be available throughout the show in the PPG Theatre.

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MMM – Supertall TV Tower Nears Completion

Photo Credit: Daily Sabah

Magnificent Metal Monday (MMM) travels to Istanbul, Turkey to check out its newest landmark, the 388-meter high Camlica Tower. According to the Daily Sabah Istanbul, the radio-TV tower on Istanbul’s Asian side nears completion. The construction of the tower, which is hoped will end visual pollution of scattered giant and outdated TV antennae, started in March 2016 on Çamlıca hill overlooking the Bosporus. 

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New Tool to Map High Impact Construction Projects

Construction Dive has launched a new tool to map high-impact construction projects across the United States. Construction is an engine that powers the U.S. economy. Across the country, large-scale projects are shaping communities by enabling industry, improving transit and meeting changing demand for commercial space and housing.

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METALCON: HOT OFF THE PRESS – KEYNOTE SPEAKERS ANNOUNCED

You’ve all heard the expression “When in Rome” … so it is only fitting that “while in Pittsburgh,” we will pay homage to the city’s rich history in sports by having two of their sports icons at METALCON 2019 which will be held in the “Steel City,” October 16-18, 2019. The METALCON team is thrilled to announce that former NFL Pittsburgh Steeler champion, Rocky Bleier, and former Pittsburgh Penguin superstar, Bryan Trottier, will take center stage as this year’s Keynote Speakers.

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Steel Projects “Stealing” the Show

Open Courts Sports Complex, Turkey

One of the aspects of writing the METALCON blog includes perusing through industry trades and stumbling on some really cool stories of metal projects happening in the world. While these are certainly more abstract that what the everyday builder in metal construction is working on, these are just too cool not to share. ArchDaily just put out this compilation of 15 architectural projects where steel truly is”steals” the show.

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Steel Tariffs — Hot Topic at METALCON 2019

Although imposed over a year ago, steel tariffs are still making headlines in today’s news. How have they affected your business this past year? Earlier today, Bloomberg News reported that after one year since the tariffs were imposed that it’s had mixed results. They are reporting that while the steel industry saw some growth in job creation, it was at a cost of approximately $900,000 per job to the taxpayer. And while American steel producers of materials like nuts and bolts saw significant gains in sales as a result of increasing their prices, large American steel companies like NUCOR and U.S. Steel saw their overall shares slump in the past year.

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MMM – Top Metal Builders of 2018

Credit: Metal Construction News

Metal Construction News just published their comprehensive report on the Top Metal Builders of 2018 based on steel tonnage usage. Overall they reported 2018 to be a strong year for metal builders based on both tonnage and square footage. Over the last 9 years, the tonnage of steel used annually by the largest metal builders has trended upward except for a slip in 2016 and 2017.

Overall, the reported use of steel jumped from 1,801.4 tons in 2017 to 2,495.8, which is more than a 36 percent increase. The size of the buildings constructed jumped more than 19 percent from 509,475 to 606,551 square feet. According to the report, CDMG, located in Canonsburg, PA, had the largest ranking increase in both tonnage and square footage.

Labor shortage still remains the number one challenge that the industry faced in 2018 and is still facing in 2019.

Courtesy of Metal Construction News

To read the full report, click HERE.

Metal Construction News has been a long-standing METALCON Partner Publication and will be on hand at METALCON 2019 in Pittsburgh, October 16-18, 2019. Make plans today to join us at the only event focused on the use of metal in design and construction. Your Total Experience awaits you.

MMM – Home of First Aluminum Building

Alcoa Building, Pittsburgh; photo courtesy of Historic Pittsburgh

We all know that Pittsburgh carries the moniker “Steel City,” but, did you know that Pittsburgh was the first city to build an all aluminum building? According to “Historic Pittsburgh,” the Alcoa Building, located at 425 6th Avenue in downtown Pittsburgh, used aluminum wherever possible including aluminum furniture, aluminum piping and wiring, and aluminum air-conditioning ducts. Its thirty-story tower is lighter and more efficient than buildings of comparable size at the time of its construction.

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MMM – Steel Veils are Decorating Buildings

From Mexico City to North Carolina to Minnesota, metal panels are serving as artistic veils for buildings.

Check out this amazing facade on an office building in Mexico City! As reported in The Architects Newspaper, “Profiles is a six-story commercial building draped in a diaphanous and perforated carbon-steel veil that partially resembling a stylish extraterrestrial ship landed in the heart of the city.” The primary function of the carbon-steel veil is to serve as an exterior-shading device, and to this effect, the design team used a digital script to randomly distribute the perforations.

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Technology will be Key in Rebuilding Notre Dame Cathedral

Laser scanned 3D image of Notre Dame; Andrew Tallon/Vassar College via National Geographic

Thanks to cutting-edge image technology, the daunting task of rebuilding a near 900 year old building will be possible. According to an article published last week in Futurism, “Thanks to the meticulous work of Vassar art historian Andrew Tallon, every exquisite detail and mysterious clue to the building’s 13th-century construction was recorded in a digital archive in 2015 using laser imaging. These records have revolutionized our understanding of how the spectacular building was built — and could provide a template for how Paris could rebuild.”

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MMM – Robotics Headquarters Features All-Metal Aesthetic, Building Envelope

Innovation First International headquarters; photo courtesy of DesignandBuildwithMetal.com

Magnificent Metal Monday (MMM) travels to Greenville, Texas, to check out the new high tech headquarters for Innovation First International. As reported by our friends with DesignandBuildwithMetal.com in March, “The company behind the popular HEX BUG micro robotic toy line was founded on the belief that product and technological innovation are vital to success, so it’s no wonder the company turned to a state-of-the-art, Metl-Span building envelope for its new, 63,500 square-foot headquarters.”

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Ice Ice Baby – Pittsburgh Fever!

PPG Paints Arena, Pittsburgh, PA; Photo courtesy of The KMA Group

It’s a sports lovers week! First the NCAA Basketball Championship Game and now onto the Stanley Cup ice hockey playoffs. Why would we cover this for our METALCON readers you ask? If you haven’t already heard, METALCON 2019 is headed to Pittsburgh in October for the first time in its 28 year show history. There are a lot of factors that go into the decision of where the show will take place year over year. Given Pittsburgh’s illustrious history in the steel industry, along with the ongoing development of its downtown and convention district, selecting it for the 2019 show was an easy decision.

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Magnificent Metal Monday

The NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship game tips off tonight with third ranked Texas Tech Red Raiders going up against #1 ranked Virginia Cavaliers. This is Texas Tech’s first appearance in the Championship Game, and could be Virginia’s first win in school history depending on the game’s outcome. After doing a little digging, both schools have some interesting architectural and steel facts!

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