Why Steel

University Residence Halls

Structural steel framing can achieve low floor-to-floor heights and ideal bay sizes for university residence halls

Structural steel framing has long been recognized as a high-strength, dimensionally predictable, rapidly erected framing material. Choosing structural steel for a dormitory project can provide significant benefits, including:

  • Low floor-to-floor heights using steel framing elements and thin-floor systems that result in maximized floor-to-ceiling heights for larger spaces, reduced overall heights or even more floors without increasing the overall building height
  • Flexible spaces thanks to long, column-free areas--ideal for amenities and unit variation (link to space utilization page)
  • Enhanced framing quality through the use of a long-lasting, durable, high-quality material fabricated off-site to tight tolerances (Quality page link)
  • Adaptability, as a steel framing system is simpler to expand or remodel, thus facilitating ease of unit conversion (Adaptability page link)
  • Reduced foundation loads, column footprint and overall project costs thanks to steel's lightweight properties (Comparison of other material link)
  • Earlier building occupancy thanks to quick erection, which reduces overall on-site construction, labor and associated time and costs (link to Schedule page)

Structural steel framing is economically competitive with other framing materials when it comes to multistory residential projects like university residence halls. Explore the following framing concepts to find the best solution for your next dormitory project.


  1. University Residence Hall Case Studies:

    1. Rutgers Univeristy Camden Housing, Camden, NJ (Girder-Slab) 

    2. Boston College 2150 Commonwealth Avenue Residence Hall, Brighton, MA (Conventional) 

    3. Southern Nazarene University A.M. Hills Residence Hall, Bethany, OK (Panelized Long Span Deck) 

    4. Ohio State University Siebert & Steeb Halls Columbus, OH (Staggered Truss)

  1. Architectural Record, August 2015: Achieving Higher Quality in High-Density Residential

  2. Prototypes of Steel Framed multistory residential

  3. Innovative systems in structural steel

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