Steel Joist Institute Announces 2017 Design Award Winners

FLORENCE, S.C., August 23, 2017 – The Steel Joist Institute (SJI) is excited to announce the winners of the 2017 Design Awards. The awards are presented in three categories – industrial, non-industrial and unique. This year’s winners are:

  • Industrial: The Method Home Products Factory project in Chicago, Illinois. This project called for new construction of a manufacturing and warehouse facility featuring a 6,000 sq. ft. office mezzanine, solar thermal hot water, photovoltaic solar panels, roof top greenhouse, and daylight harvesting. At occupancy, it is only the second manufacturing plant in the US to be certified Platinum LEED. The entire roof was designed as steel joists and Joist Girders to achieve maximum economy. The light and airy look of open web steel joists allowed natural light in from 40 skylights, while strong enough to support a 2-acre greenhouse on part of the roof. The project included 400 tons of steel joists and Joist Girders, which were manufactured by Gooder-Henrichsen Co. Team members on the project include: KJWW Engineering Consultants (structural engineer), William McDonough & Partners, Heitman Architects (architect), Aetna Engineering (steel fabricator), and Summit Design + Build, LLC (general contractor). Photos of the project can be viewed at
  • Non-industrial: The Gerald Ford International Airport Parking Deck Roof in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Since the original construction in 2011, this airport has never used the top parking deck during the winter. With the growth of air travel, the airport wanted to cover the top level without entirely closing the sides. For long-term protection, along with the structural steel, the final design required all the steel joists & bridging to be galvanized. With over 600 pieces at 62′-0″ long, the joists were too long for single dip galvanizing, resulting in each joist being fabricated with a custom matched bolted splice at the center. Steel joists were lighter in weight and more economical than using wide flange beams. Vulcraft/Verco Group manufactured the steel joists. Team members on the project include: Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr & Huber, Inc (structural engineer and architect) and Builders Iron (steel fabricator). Photos of the project can be viewed at
  •  Unique: Philip Simmons High School in Charleston, South Carolina. The project covers 214,000 sq. ft. and includes 275 tons of joist and Joist Girders, features 120″ deep Joist Girders spanning 118′-0″, 100″ deep double pitched top chord “gable” joist spanning 60′-0″ and KCS joist in addition to sloping parallel chord underslung joist. The use of sloping joist and double pitched top chord joists offered the architect the ability to design high and low roofs that blend with the architecture style of the Charleston area. Canam Steel Corporation served as the steel joist manufacturer. Team members on the project include: ADC Engineering, Inc. (structural engineer), McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture (architect), and D & T Steel, Inc. (steel fabricator). Photos of the project can be viewed at

Judging of each project was based on flexibility, speed of construction, value and aesthetic considerations. Eligible projects included new buildings and major retrofit or expansion projects, which were constructed within the last three years and located in the United States, Canada or Mexico. Additionally, an active member of the Steel Joist Institute must have manufactured the steel joists and/or Joist Girders.

Besides setting standards for the steel joist industry, the Steel Joist Institute works closely with major building code bodies throughout the country helping to develop code regulations regarding steel joists and Joist Girders. The Institute also invests thousands of dollars in research related to steel joists and Joist Girders, and offers a complete library of publications and other training, research and design aids. The Steel Joist Institute is a not-for-profit organization. For more information, visit or join the Steel Joist LinkedIn group

Melissa Breer
PR Account Manager
HLK Agency
Tel: 314.571.6299

J. Kenneth Charles, III
Managing Director
Steel Joist Institute
Tel: 843.407.4091