structure, typically with a roof and walls, standing more or less permanently in one place

A building is an enclosed structure, particularly one constructed of solid materials, with some kind of roof and walls. Types include:

Houses in a city

Residential buildings are constructed as dwellings. These are where people primarily sleep and do other domestic activities. Examples include apartment blocks and houses.

Commercial buildings are for operating businesses in. Examples include restaurants, stores and office buildings.

Hotels and motels are in a category of building that is both residential (in that people sleep there), and commercial as they are businesses.

Religious buildings are places of worship. Examples include mosques, temples, and churches.

Industrial buildings are where different types of industry take place, such as manufacturing. Examples of an industrial building include a warehouse or factory or workshop.

Residential institutional - Buildings that are residential institutions are facilities that house people who can't live in the general population of the society due to crimes they committed, inability to take care of themselves, lack of an income or currently undergoing a residential treatment or training program. Prisons, poorhouses, psychiatric hospitals, nursing homes, college residence halls and military barracks all are examples of residential institutional facilities.

Governmental, utility and public buildings - in which official government functions are conducted. Examples include courthouses, legislative offices, power plants, storage sheds and post offices

By putting a window in a wall with or without glass, we let light inside the building. We leave a hole somewhere big enough to go in and out, with a door which can be opened and closed. Often the door will have a lock so the building can be left secure.

If a building is to last for a long time, it must have a solid foundation. This foundation is like the root of a tree, which is sunk a bit deep into the ground and supports the walls. If the ground is soft, the foundation must be very deep and strong so that the building can have a strong contact with the ground.

Galata Tower, Istanbul Turkey

A tall building can have more than one floor. People can climb from one floor to the next by a staircase, or perhaps by a lift or elevator. This is known as going upstairs, or downstairs. Buildings can also have one or more floors under the ground. This is usually called a cellar or basement.

Buildings can be beautiful or ugly, exciting or boring. Architects are people trained to design buildings. Their work is called architecture and it can be an art form. There are many architectural styles.

Look at the building where you are reading this. Look at the shapes and shadows. Is there enough light? Do some rooms make you feel like staying in them while others make you want to hurry away? Do they have interesting features? Think about how you could have made the building better. Almost anybody can become an architect if they want to. But only a good architect or a good builder can design or build a beautiful building.

Temporary formwork has been used in construction since ancient times. The history of the development of formwork technologies is closely related to the evolution of architectural forms.[1]

Collectively, buildings, bridges and roads are known as the built environment

Types of buildings


Shelters are places to live (residential buildings). We also build places to work and to make things, places to store things, places to sell things, places where sick people can go to be treated, places to put people who break our laws. We build to do many things.

Some buildings are meeting places. A large number of people can gather at a temple or theater or stadium to worship god or to hear or see what other people say or do. In Christendom they are called churches. Until we began to build skyscrapers, religious buildings were usually the largest, tallest buildings in a town. Fortresses and castles were also big but usually were not in town. Big buildings require much work to make and maintain, thus can symbolize power. They impress and they give a focus to cities.

Buildings are made of various materials. Where wood is plentiful, it is much used. Many very old buildings of stone exist. Concrete is used almost everywhere. Starting in the late 19th century, skyscrapers were made of steel, increasingly combined with glass.

  1. "Construction of buildings". Archived from the original on 2023-01-19. Retrieved 2023-01-19.