METRIC DESIGN GUIDE
Benefits Of Metric
U.S. industrial firms have sometimes been excluded from dealing in international markets
because they are unable to deliver goods measured in metric terms. Others are increasingly
unwilling to overcome this hurdle to utilize our products. U.S. firms in many cases then
have to produce two sizes of a particular product.
U.S. firms will enjoy enhanced export potential by conducting business in the international
language of measurement. Many companies have taken the initiative to understand foreign
markets and become fluent in metric.
Metric is decimal-based, and therefore simpler and faster to use. Trying to multiply 27
feet, 8-5/8 inches, by 32 feet, 6-7/16 inches, to obtain area demonstrates the complexity of
our current system. English dimensions have to be converted to be added or multiplied,
while metric ones do not.
The Canadian Construction Association reports that metric produced direct benefits, in
terms of reductions in design costs and time, increased efficiencies in construction
operations, and improved material and component dimensioning techniques, when
commercial construction in Canada switched to the metric system years ago.
The U.S. Government in its own operations could expect the same advantages as stated in
Pub. L. 100-418.
Many organizations and some businesses have viewed metric conversion as an
opportunity, and simultaneously selected fewer standard product sizes, reducing
inventories and required manufacturing equipment. This opportunity exists with us as
One Unit For Each Property
The metric system simplifies building engineering by using only one unit for each physical