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The latest version of the Cost Comparison Survey, comparing steel and concrete buildings, has been published. Two commercial buildings and a multi-storey retail/residential block were designed in both steel and concrete and then evaluated in the survey commissioned by Corus. Arup did the concrete designs, the Steel Construction Institue (SCI) the steel, Mace acted as project manager and Davis Langdon provided QS input. The survey shows that, despite recent fluctuations in steel prices, steel is still some 3-5 per cent below concrete in overall building cost for the commercial buildings, and around 2 per cent cheaper for the mixed-use residential building.

Corus general manager Alan Todd also notes that in 1981 a tonne of structural steel with fireproofing cost around £985 in multi-storey construction, £2,800 at today's prices.

Yet today the actual price is about £1,500, around half of its 1981 real cost. Further information on the survey is available from Roger Steeper, Corus Construction & Industrial, tel 01724 405771.

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