When it comes to steel structure building and design, consumers have a wide variety of structural choices for how their building will take form. The rigidity and strength of structural steel allows it to be a versatile material for constructing buildings that hold challenging or complex structural needs. Those who need a large building with no interior support columns can benefit from building their own “clear span” structure. As a proven team of steel erectors in Michigan, Sanilac Steel has the experience and skills to deliver the best services in the construction industry. From ornate metal work to staircases and more, our team strives to deliver the best results in a safe, efficient manner. Since 1967, our experts have set the standard for how steel frame construction should be conducted.

The Sanilac team is ready to take on any architectural challenge out there. Today, we’ll discuss what a clear span building is and how it may be the perfect solution for your building logistics. When done, be sure to contact us to learn more about our steel construction services!

What is Clear Span?

A clear span building typically consists of steel framework that aims to provide large open spaces or clear spans through the interior. This means that you will find no interior supports within to keep the structure standing. Numerous applications and activities require this type of space, where an interior column can prove to be a problem. It can help to picture watching a baseball game from a seat that is located behind a support pillar. This support element is needed for the structure’s integrity, yet it inconveniences your good time.

Clear Span Applications

There are many industries that can benefit from clear span structural steel erection for their building. With an expansive amount of open space, clear span buildings can be used for:

  • Gymnasiums
  • Warehouses
  • Storage facilities
  • Industrial factories
  • Modern sports facilities
  • Movie or live theaters
  • Churches
  • Aircraft hangars

The height and width advantages of steel help to make it the top choice for large facilities that cannot put up with interior support systems. While structural limitations do exist, the overall versatility makes this material the top choice for nearly every industry.

Clear Span Building Types

The total amount of space you need will help to determine what kind of building you will need. Your square footage will decide whether you need single or multi-span metal framing for your structure.

Single Span Rigid Framing

Consisting of one single span, this style consists of one slab (or beam) that is supported at either end. The general restrictions for this continuous frame consist of a frame width up to 120 feet with an eave height that reaches up to 24 feet. Based on your building needs, the width can be stretched up to roughly 200 feet if the right conditions are met. Structural changes, such as shortening your exterior walls’ headroom, will need to be done to offer the proper support. Single span structures are ideal for smaller buildings where a larger center height is needed. This includes aircraft hangars, sporting arenas, and more.

Multi-Span Rigid Framing

Also known as a post and beam frame, this application is similar to single spans in design. However, beams and pillars are used more often for support functions. Multi-span frames can be nearly unlimited in size, with only the size and interior demands as the limiting factors. The rafters and columns can be tapered or straight as well, delivering flexibility for each design. This style is best intended for larger buildings that require a lot of open space, such as factories and warehouses. Remember, though, that the columns placed to support your roof will be very difficult to relocate if renovations are needed in the future. Our steel experts can help you plan, design, and install your metal structure to ensure the best outcome.

From small workshops to professional football fields, clear span buildings represent a favorable option with structural steel for creating large, open interior spaces. Sanilac Steel is proud to be your source for the best steel building solutions in the industry. Since 1967, our steel erectors in Michigan have proudly worked to optimize our operations, delivering the safest and most efficient services possible. Contact us to learn more about our steel services or to receive a quote on your building!