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The United States has seen a 14 percent increase in the number of commercial buildings and a 21 percent increase in floor space since 2003, according to the Energy Information Administration’s Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey. In 2012, the country had 5.6 million commercial buildings consuming 87 billion square feet of floor space. 

The average size of buildings constructed before 1960 is 12,000 square feet, while those constructed in the 2000s average 19,000 square feet. Four building types—health care, lodging, retail and religious—showed a statistically significant increase in building size when comparing buildings built before 1960 with those constructed in the 2000s. 

Almost half of all commercial buildings constructed since 2000 were built in the South, which experienced the fastest rate of population growth across all census regions during the 2000 to 2012 period. These new buildings are 32 percent larger than those constructed before 2000. 

For more information, visit www.eia.gov/consumption/commercial.

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