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How Structural Steel Transformed the Construction Industry

December 04, 2019

Structural steel plays an essential role in commercial and industrial construction applications. Offering a myriad of material benefits, it’s no wonder that structural steel fabricators are always hard at work fabricating structural steel structures and components for use in construction.


Fabricated into beams, columns, and into the skeletons of buildings and bridges – structural steel is chosen for its ability to promote building efficiently without compromising on safety and durability.


In today’s blog we’ll examine the ways in which structural steel has effectively transformed the construction industry.


Early Uses of Structural Steel in Construction


The use of iron in for construction applications has been around for centuries, but we began to see an increase in its usage during the Industrial Revolution. During this time, steel was primarily used in the construction of train stations. The years to come would see its use in the construction of churches, private buildings, and other structures during this period.

It wasn’t until the late 1800s that the first structural steel frames would be used in the construction of multi-storey buildings and skyscrapers. Steel became its most popular in the early 20th century through both World Wars for its use in constructing military shelters and for storing oil.

The universality of steel for construction applications became readily apparent midway through the 20th century. The feasibility of acquiring steel became easier, and it became essential in the erecting of some of the world’s most notable landmarks, like New York City’s Empire State Building.

Toward the end of the 20th century, the steel industry continued to thrive with the production of structural steel. Advances in the structural steel industry allowed structural steel fabricators to hone in on this steady-growing demand for structural steel in the construction of buildings we use and rely on every day.


Looking Forward


There’s no denying the utility of structural steel on contemporary construction applications. With new demands within the tech industry, and with more and more consideration brought to living more sustainably – steel is perfectly suited for meeting these needs as we look toward the future of the structural steel industry. As an infinitely recyclable material, steel is a fitting material for modular construction – and is flexible enough to meet the needs of more automated processes. As more trends emerge within the construction industry, it will be interesting to see the ways in which structural steel fabricators adapt and evolve.