The Metal Initiative aims to increase the use of metal in the commercial construction market.

CHICAGO - The Metal Initiative, an industry-wide program designed to increase the use of metal in the commercial construction market, was introduced at the Metal Construction Association's 2005 annual meeting Jan. 29-31 in La Jolla, Calif.

"This is an industry-wide consortium of individuals, companies and associations banding together to increase the use of metal," said Steve Collins, marketing director for the drive. "It's larger than any one company or association. All companies, manufacturers, distributors and installers associated with metal products can participate and benefit from this initiative."

The educational and promotional program focuses on increasing the selection of metal roofs and walls in commercial, industrial and institutional building sectors and targets building owners, architects, designers, consultants and contractors. It is based on $10.5 million in funding over a five-year period.

The group hopes to increase metal roof and wall market share by 25 percent and increase sales of metal products by $2 billion. Currently, metal accounts for approximately 20 percent of roofing and 24 percent of wall panels in commercial, industrial and institutional markets.

"This collective effort to grow the metal roof and wall business will increase opportunities for prospects and sales for the entire industry," said Rick Mowrey, head of MCA's marketing committee. "The asphalt, single-ply, concrete, precise and brick industries have collectively conveyed the wrong facts and hurt metal's reputation long enough. It's time for our industry to tell the correct story."

For details, visit www.itmustbemetal.com.