The Steel Erectors Association of America (SEAA) recently featured winners of its annual Project of the Year competition in the Winter 2017 issue of Connector. Selected by an independent panel of judges, projects are recognized for their complexity, and companies are awarded the Project of the Year for overcoming challenges while maintaining safe work standards. Four steel erectors were recognized at SEAA’s 43rd Annual National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, for jobs that were topped out in 2015.

Liberty University’s School of Music — detailed by Virtual Steel Technologies, Inc. of Virginia Beach, Virginia — was the winner for the Class III Erection Contract over $1 million to $2.5 million category.

The 144,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art structure is part of Liberty's $500 million campus rebuilding project. The building will feature a 1,600-seat fine arts auditorium; 50 practice rooms; 40 teaching studios and piano, songwriting, and music computer labs; as well as two student recital halls/classrooms.

The center features complex geometry throughout, especially around the rotunda, with a complex radial truss roof system to support a conically shaped standing seam roof. Other notable project features include hung catwalk and lighting systems; the orchestra pit, choir seating and theater seating — constructed of concrete steel form work — were all modeled and completed in SDS/2.

The fully BIM compliant project included full model exchange between the detailer, architect (VMDO Architects) and engineer (Fox & Associates). Drones and helmet cams were used to facilitate the erection process, which was critical when a technical eye was required to review field conditions.

To read more about this project in SEAA's Connector, click here.


The Steel Construction Institute (SCI) has recently assessed Design Data’s SDS/2 2016 for connection design.

SCI reviewed a series of typical connection designs in detail; the assessment was made in accordance with Eurocode 3: Design of steel structures, BS EN 1993, and the relevant UK National Annexes. Additionally, the “Green Books” were used as reference documents, being referenced in the UK National Annex and the de facto standard in the UK.

According to the SCI Assessed website, "SCI Assessed" is an established quality mark that is awarded to testify that manufacturers' technical data has been independently verified by SCI. The scheme provides reliability for the range of performance data offered by suppliers particularly where, for example, the product is new or the values are based on calculation methods outside the scope of established standards.

SCI has been a trusted, independent source of information and engineering expertise globally for over 30 years, and remains the leading, independent provider of technical expertise and disseminator of best practice to the steel construction sector. SCI offers comprehensive advice, technical information, consultancy services and membership for manufacturers, engineers, designers and specifers for every aspect of steel construction.


For the past 16 years, Design Data has been conducting new release seminars to give users productive insights into new and improved features. Once again, we are hosting live seminars around the country to introduce users to SDS/2 2017.

Who Should Attend?
The SDS/2 2017 seminars are open to anyone who wants to learn more about the software. The cost for the one-day seminar is $25 per person for the first five attendees for each company (there is no charge for additional attendees beyond the first five).

When and Where Are the Seminars?
The seminars take place beginning in May and are scheduled through June. For the complete seminar schedule, click here.

Why Should I Attend?
The wide-ranging depth of SDS/2 may mean some users are not using the software to its full potential. These seminars will show users new features, and new ways to increase productivity with SDS/2.

How Can I Register?
Online registration is now open. Click here to register.


Design Data will once again be exhibiting as part of the Steel Erectors Association of America's annual conference. The 45th annual SEAA National Convention and Tradeshow includes high-quality educational sessions and the chance to network with steel erectors, fabricators, detailers, engineers and more.

The conference will take place April 27-29 at Kingston Plantation in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The tradeshow will take place on the 27th and 28th, featuring more than 60 exhibits.

To register and learn more, click here.

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