- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 09 Nov 2018
See Single-storey building definition for more information.
The number of storeys is determined according to the diagram below:
[Image source: Approved Document B2, ‘Fire safety: Buildings other than dwellinghouses’]
Depending on their height, multi-storey buildings may have particular considerations and requirements in relation to:
- Access and circulation.
- Fire safety and evacuation.
- Structural design.
- External air movement.
- Shading, views and right to light.
- Construction methods.
- Access for maintenance and cleaning.
Classifications of multi-storey buildings include:
- Low-rise: a building which is not tall enough to be classified as high-rise.
- Mid-rise: buildings of five to ten storeys, equipped with lifts.
- High-rise: more than 7 to 10 storeys.
- Skyscraper: 40 storeys or more.
- Supertall: exceeding 300 m.
- Megatall: exceeding 600 m.
 Structural types
The basic types of multi-storey structure (which may be used in combination) include:
Bracing is used to give stability so that columns can be designed as pure compression members. The beams and columns that form the frame carry vertical loads, and the bracing system carries the lateral loads. Braced frames reduce lateral displacement, as well as the bending moment in columns, they are economical, easily erected and have the design flexibility to create the strength and stiffness required.
For more information, see Braced frame structures.
For more information, see Shear wall.
For more information, see Shell and core.
Also known as ‘tube-in-tube’ and consists of a core tube inside the structure which holds services such as utilities and lifts, as well as a tube system on the exterior. The inner and outer tubes interact horizontally as the shear and flexural components of a wall-frame structure.
For more information, see Tube structural system.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Braced frame structure.
- Concept structural design of buildings.
- High-rise building.
- Multi-storey car park.
- Shear wall.
- Shell and core.
- Single-storey building definition.
- Skeleton frame.
- Structural engineer.
- Structural principles.
- Tall building.
- Tube structural system.
- Types of building.
- Types of structural load.
Featured articles and news
The David Lloyd Lymington Sports Village was 'Commended' in CIAT's 2018 AT Awards.
How do we make the smart city a reality?
Sir Nicholas Grimshaw has been awarded the UK’s highest honour for architecture.
Protecting the construction industry from Brexit.
Conceiving buildings collaboratively, testing them virtually.
Effective collaboration in post-disaster response and recovery
How do you prepare a claim for an extension of time and ensure it isn't rejected?
How innovative ‘design thinking’ may lead to new surface-water solutions.
What will be this year's office design trends?
Enhancing sustainability and resilience in disaster response.
What are EIAs, why are they needed and for which type of project?