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Nice Views: Ritz-Carlton's Steel Construction Tour

(The American Institute of Steel Construction checks out the Ritz's 26th floor; Image courtesy blogdowntown. More photos here.)

Today there were more hardhats than usual at the construction site of Downtown's new Ritz-Carlton, according to blogdowntown. The trade group American Institute of Steel Construction was there to marvel at the building's steel-plate sheer walls, which seismically protect the skyscraper and were used instead of concrete. While this sounds like insider-baseball speak, the steel construction allows for an increase in window space, a 30% decrease in the building's weight, and three to four months taken off the project’s timeline. For developer AEG, the steel decreased the thickness needed for walls, which meant an extra 776 square feet in sellable space per floor. With 26 floors of condos, that adds up to just over 20,000 extra square feet, and with prices over a grand a foot, that’s an extra $20 million in condos for AEG to sell. According to the previously-mentioned Financial Times piece, 60% of the units have been bought. The building is now up to 46 stories with a top-off in December--two months ahead of schedule.
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