CHICAGO—Demand for structural steel on construction projects in the United States will continue to grow in 2007, according to industry forecasts. The American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) projects a growth in tonnage demand for structural steel of 2 percent in 2007.

Members of the structural steel industry at every level of the supply chain are taking steps to ensure that supply continues to meet the expanding needs of the construction industry. The domestic production capacity of structural steel will increase by 10 percent in 2007, as a result of mill expansions currently under construction.

Notable areas of growth in demand for structural steel in 2007 will include industrial and warehouse projects, parking, schools and universities, and public-sector projects. The 2007 forecast shows a continuation of the trend in recent years toward increased usage of structural steel on projects of every description. Overall, forecast data also shows continued growth in total construction volume, with 2007 projected to equal the previous peak of 1.94 billion square feet achieved in 2000.

Industry reports also indicate growth in demand for structural steel on projects not traditionally included in national building square footage statistics, such as power plants, petrochemical and ethanol facilities, processing facilities, and non-roofed stadiums, among others.

Roger Ferch, president of AISC, commented, "Structural steel continues to be the material of choice on building projects throughout North America. With continued growth in demand projected for 2007, members of the industry—from mills and service centers to fabricators and erectors—are making sure that structural steel remains readily available for every type of project."

More information about structural steel and industry projections for 2007 can be found online at www.aisc.org.

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