The skyscrapers that continue to reach remarkable heights demand the skills of engineers, the strength of steel, and the labor of thousands. They’re amazing structures to behold even during the building process, but its only when they gleam as part of city skyline that we seam to full appreciate them.
It’s glass that delivers such an effect. There are new projects across the United States that have created serious demand for this building material, and that’s created a new and even crippling challenge for the construction industry.
Residual Effects Of the Recession
Without an ample supply of glass to complete a wide range of industrial, residential, and commercial building projects, many of them stand still.
Currently, the industry is still hindered by the residual effects of the 2008 recession, which many glass and other material manufacturers had to cutback production and even close their doors. The remaining glass producers that serve the industry now cannot keep up with the feverous demand of the current building boom.
Producers Unprepared, Prices On The Rise
Even the most optimistic glass manufacturers couldn’t predict and prepare for the current glut of high-ride construction projects. Prices have jumped more than 30% in the last year and a half.
In areas where skyscrapers are rising to unprecedented heights, such as Manhattan’s West Side, the resulting price increases and supply shortages have become especially critical. Some developers have even decided that waiting on current glass manufacturers simply isn’t worth it.
A Buyer Becomes A Manufacturer
The U.S.’s largest private developer, Related Companies, has gone ahead and established its own glass manufacturing facility in Linwood, PA. It’s hoped that the $16 million, 180,000 sq. ft. glass factory will a wise bet for getting the 3,000 architectural panels needed for one of the company’s current West Side apartment towers.
Reportedly, Related’s president has said their choice for producing their own glass supply is a better bet than dealing with logistical issues, limited producers, and increased costs.
Causing The Boom To Go Bust?
Construction industry experts have said that this slowly emerging problem is likely to be a lasting one. With that in mind, do you think Related Companies has made a smart move in establishing their own facility?
What will happen for those companies that do have the means to do so?
Will the currently glass shortage cause the current building boom to go bust so soon after the end of the recession?