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Re: Concrete vs. Steel

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Dear Scott
I'm not going to tell you about advantages and disadvantages of concrete or steel structures and the parameters which affect the material selection procedure for a specific structure. You know that. So I think the best answer is giving you a survey of my works. I have worked as a structural engineer in Iran (you say Middle East) for more than 8 years. Here is structural types that I designed: 1-Residential apartments and educational buildings (High schools, etc.) with less than 4 stories: Concrete (Cement is more available than steel shapes for ordinary owners). 2-Residential and Office buildings with more than 4 and up to 10 stories: Concrete and steel (No preferences). 3-Residential and Office buildings more than 10 stories: Steel (because of pumping difficulties, construction speed, poor quality of ready mixed concretes and so on).
4-Industrial frames with large spans: Steel (Steel structure
is lighter, can be built in parts- ready for installation in site, and the best thing is that they can reinstall and relocate!)

I moved here in Los Angeles last year. You know that most of the small buildings in LA have wood structure. But I'm in specialty structure business. We use everything including steel, aluminium, stainless steel, fabric, glass, ..., except concrete! Concrete hasn't have enough flexibility for a decorative, exposed and lightweight structure.

Good luck

Fariborz Tehrani                       Phone: (310)509-8826
Civil Engineer                           Fax: (530)481-9532
BSCE, MSCE, PE                    Voice Mail: (877)743-6206
email: fmtehrani(--nospam--at)

From: Scott Maxwell <smaxwell(--nospam--at)>
Reply-To: seaint(--nospam--at)
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
CC: jwight(--nospam--at)
Subject: Concrete vs. Steel
Date: Fri, 22 Oct 1999 09:47:04 -0400

Dear fellow structural engineers:

I have received a request from one of my professors from school.  He has
been asked by ACI to look into the issue of the use of concrete vs. steel.
The question has been raised as to whether strucutural engineers are more
likely to pick steel over concrete, and if so...why?  I can give a fair
answer for the Detroit area, but they are also looking for input nationally.

So, I would appreciate it if you have any thoughts on the matter.  If you
have an opinion, then you can respond either to myself or to the list, and
then I will forward the information onto my professor.  I would also
appreciate it if you could specific which area of the country (or world)
you are from so that we can get an idea of "regional" preferences.

BTW, there is a little bit of a time restraint...I need to get any comments
forwarded by Thursday of next week (10/28) at the latest.

Thanks much,


Scott E. Maxwell, PE
Structural Engineer

SHG Inc.
500 Griswold, Suite 500
Detroit, MI  48226

Phone: (313) 442-8253
Fax:   (313) 442-8297

Work Email:     smaxwell(--nospam--at)
Personal Email: smaxwell(--nospam--at)

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