over·​build | \ ˌō-vər-ˈbild How to pronounce overbuild (audio) \
overbuilt\ ˌō-​vər-​ˈbilt How to pronounce overbuild (audio) \; overbuilding

Definition of overbuild

transitive verb

: to build beyond the actual demand of

intransitive verb

: to build houses or commercial developments in excess of demand

Examples of overbuild in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Years of developers overbuilding shopping centers resulted in a bubble of retail space that ultimately burst. Marc Bain, Quartz, 26 May 2020 Tokyo Olympic venues are relatively small in size, due in part to the organizing committee’s focus on not overbuilding and a push to repurpose venues from the 1964 Tokyo Games. Rachel Bachman, WSJ, 16 Jan. 2020 After McKay won that race, Republican Joseph Galdo continued the line of attack, suggesting that developers with easy access to supervisors have been allowed to overbuild in some areas of the county. Washington Post, 3 Dec. 2019 Keen also overbuilds and supports the frames to make sure the ramps remain stable, year after year. Timothy Dahl, Popular Mechanics, 6 Dec. 2018 In the years leading up to the 2008 economic crisis, Mr. Jackson criticized U.S. car makers for overbuilding their inventory and then using steep discounts to move cars off dealer lots, a practice that erodes profits and damages a brand’s image. Adrienne Roberts, WSJ, 19 Sep. 2018 Longtime California residents have seen developers misbehave before, overbuilding luxury units and displacing residents in entire neighborhoods with waves of gentrification. Adam Rogers, WIRED, 21 June 2018 So fears of overbuilding the downtown area may be premature, at least for now. John Gallagher, Detroit Free Press, 14 May 2018 This deal comes amid industry consolidation as marine transportation works to recover from a down cycle caused by overbuilding barge equipment during the shale boom. Andrea Rumbaugh, Houston Chronicle, 3 May 2018 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'overbuild.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of overbuild

1945, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Learn More About overbuild

Time Traveler for overbuild

Time Traveler

The first known use of overbuild was in 1945

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near overbuild

over budget



See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for overbuild

Cite this Entry

“Overbuild.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/overbuild. Accessed 2 Oct. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon


Test Your Vocabulary

The Great British Vocabulary Quiz

  • union jack speech bubble
  • Named after Sir Robert Peel, what are British police called?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!