Types of Construction Companies

The Construction sector is made up of businesses that are engaged in the construction of buildings (residential, commercial and industrial) or civil engineering projects (highways and utility systems).  The Construction sector also includes specialty trades (plumbing, carpentry) and building services.

Construction companies that manage a whole construction project are commonly known as general contractors.  Companies that specialize in one specific construction trade (masonry, painting, electrical work, etc.) are called specialty trade contractors.

Specialty trade contractors are either subcontracted from general contractors or, often in the case of remodeling and repair construction, the work may be done directly for the owner of the property.

Types of Construction Projects

Construction project come in many sizes.  Some companies have all the employees, skills and equipment to do all the different kinds of work themselves (general contractors), and some specialize in one area like plumbing, brick laying or plastering (specialty trade contractors).


Construction of Buildings

Single Family Homes – New Construction, Additions, and Remodeling

Multi-Family Homes – Town Homes, Duplexes, Apartment Towers, Town Homes, Condos

Commercial Buildings – Offices, Hotels, Churches, Shopping Centers, Stadiums, etc.

Industrial Buildings – Factories, Mills, Manufacturing Plants, etc.


Heavy and Civil Engineering Construction

Utility System Construction – The construction of distribution lines and related buildings and structures for utilities (i.e., water, sewer, petroleum, gas, power, and communication), and all structures that are integral parts of utility systems (e.g., storage tanks, pumping stations, power plants, and refineries) are included in this group.  Some utility construction is done by sub-contractors who work for private companies, and some by employees of utility companies (For information about careers in the utility industry, go to the Utility Careers Page).

Land Subdivision – The dividing of property into lots, for subsequent sale to builders. Servicing of land may include excavation work for the installation of roads and utility lines.  Land subdivision precedes building activity and the subsequent building is often residential, but may also be commercial tracts and industrial parks.

Highway, Street, and Bridge Construction – The construction of highways (including elevated), streets, roads, airport runways, public sidewalks, or bridges. The work performed may include new work, reconstruction, rehabilitation, and repairs. Specialty trade contractors are included in this industry if they are engaged in activities primarily related to highway, street, and bridge construction (e.g., installing guardrails on highways).

Other Types of Heavy and Civil Engineering Construction Construction projects involving water resources (e.g., dredging and land drainage), development of marine facilities, railroad tracks, ski slopes, and projects involving open space improvement (e.g., parks and trails) are included in this industry.