For those not involved in the construction business, the differences between industrial and commercial construction may seem insignificant.  However, for those involved in a variety of different construction processes, the difference between industrial and commercial construction are considerable.  If you asked, “What is the difference between industrial and commercial construction?” you may be answered with a list similar to this.

The Difference Between Industrial And Commercial Businesses

The most distinguishing difference between industrial and commercial businesses is their reason for being.  Industrial businesses typically focus on manufacturing and dealings between businesses whereas commercial businesses generally offer goods and services to consumers which may be composed of other businesses, but quite often include the general public.  These two business types require different construction practices which we cover below.


Because commercial businesses are supplying goods and services to the general public as well as other businesses, they’re typically built in easy-to-access locations.  This means being within municipal limits and on busy thoroughways.  Industrial businesses are often more concerned with reducing impact on residential areas and being able to easily access major transportation links such as highways and railroads.  The locations of each type of business influence the type of permitting and regulatory procedures which are encountered during the planning and construction processes.


Because commercial businesses often depend on their retail presence to attract customers, aesthetics play a more important role in commercial construction.  Attractive, inviting and easy-to-access construction projects are generally favoured by commercial businesses.  Industrial businesses, on the other hand, are typically influenced by the ability of their construction projects to handle heavy loads, easily deal with large quantities of materials, safely use hazardous goods and promote operational efficiency.  Rather than worrying about decoration and embellishment, industrial construction projects are typically more concerned about smooth functioning.


Industrial businesses will quite often require resources on a much larger scale than needed for commercial business.  These resources could include electricity, water and space.  Industrial construction projects need to keep these requirements in mind during the planning and building phases.  Commercial businesses may not require the same type of resources needed for industrial activities, but they often exceed those needed in residential construction projects.  Ensuring the right systems are in place during a commercial construction project is key to a successful commercial build.