Monday, May 26, 2008

Steel Fabrication

I was looking through the Members List of the Utah Steel Fabricators Association, and it struck me how much this technology had evolved in my lifetime. I used to associate steel fabrication with quonset huts, oil refineries and the Darth-Vader-style, soulless office buildings.

Megaplex TheaterIn the last decades, people have really pushed the design capabilities of steel. The picture to the right shows the new Megaplex Theater in Ogden. all over the place I am seeing steel used for more than just the box frame of a building.

Salt Lake City proper used to have a more vibrant steel industry. This was before the city's socially active political leadership chased most of the local industrial base to China. The surviving steel fabricators hide in suburbs and rural communities.

As people realize that you can do cool things like build lightrail lines, community centers, monorails and really cool looking buildings with steel, fabrication might come back in vogue.

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