Today’s world faces a lot of challenges that may seem overwhelming – depletion of natural resources, terrorism, wars and strife, among others. As for the last two challenges, ordinary folks can only rely on the government to deal with them for the most part. But as far as caring for the environment and reducing carbon footprint are concerned, we all can do our share.
As more and more consumers adopt sustainable practices, businessmen are starting to embrace a new approach in doing business, which they call responsible capitalism – balancing profits with responsible behaviour.
An opportunity for businessmen to contribute to sustainability is to choose metal buildings over traditional construction methods in building new facilities. Metal buildings allow for lower construction costs, increased operational savings, and unmatched durability.
Today’s metal buildings are inconsistent with previous notions of ugly tin sheds and rusty warehouses. On the contrary, modern metal buildings are now popular solutions to most construction needs, from commercial buildings, offices, aircraft hangars, banks, car dealerships, schools, churches and many more. They can be engineered into almost anything and can be clad with a variety of wall systems and facades.
Yes, metal buildings are pre-fabricated; but they can be tailor-made to suit the customer’s specifications through the use of the latest computerized design software, which ensures that the use of materials is optimised. The flange width and thickness and web depth and thickness are determined by the amount of stress of each structural member, so you only pay for what you need. No more; no less.
All the elements of metal buildings come out of the factory pre-cut and pre-drilled to their exact specifications and they arrive at the site ready for assembly. Therefore, site management costs are minimal. There is lesser energy needed to ferry workers, materials, tools and equipment to and from the site.
Besides, metal buildings are not just recyclable but lighter in weight when compared to other types of structures so foundation costs are lower. Erection, foundation work and site work are more sustainable since they use fewer resources.
Another cost-effective and sustainable feature of metal buildings is the use of insulation, which is placed in the cavities beneath the roofs and the walls. The amount of insulation depends on the application and the existing building codes. Insulation is instrumental in the energy-efficiency of steel buildings because it aids in the control of air exchange, which optimises the use of air-conditioning and thereby lowering energy consumption.
Indeed, you might say that metal buildings are sustainable because it is low on everything – overall construction costs, energy usage, and amount of waste produced during the useful life of the structure and upon its demise.