We really like having corten as part of our material pallet of possibilities. The qualities of low maintenance, long lifespan and reusability fit in with our general material choices. Corten is not only made from pre and post consumer recycled steel … it is 100% recyclable itself. Plus the warm rusty coloring – and changing color tone over time – are very compatible with other building materials we favor: clean bare concrete, reclaimed wood, exposed brick structure, etc.
While researching this post, I was amused to come across this rant on Treehugger complaining about “all this architect love for COR_TEN steel.” The author practically pulls out ‘kids-these-days’ line in his grumping about the material’s “recent” popularity and then he goes on to confuse the intentional weathering process with “deteriorat[ing] before your very eyes.”
In fact, Corten is hardly a new kid on the block.