The advantages that steel offers to the construction sector have long been recognised by designers and specifiers. This is demonstrated by steel's market share which, over the past 15 years, has consistently been approximately 90% for single-storey industrial buildings and 70% for multi-storey non-residential buildings.The versatility of steel gives architects the freedom to achieve their most ambitious visions. Structural steel is an essential component of most stadia, shopping centres and commercial developments; steel cladding systems adorn iconic, landmark structures worldwide. Steel is one of the most sustainable construction materials. Its strength and durability coupled to its ability to be recycled, again and again, without ever losing quality make it truly compatible with long term sustainable development. Building owners value the flexibility of steel buildings, and the value benefits they provide, such as the light, open, airy spaces that can be created, making it ideal for modernisation, reconfiguring, extending or adapting with minimal disruption, and without costly and sometimes harmful demolition and redevelopment. Even without these benefits, steel is often the first choice on the basis of cost alone. Many of the advantages of steel construction are applicable to all building types and sectors. In this article the case is made for steel construction in nine key areas.
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