Works Trends & Modern Office Design
by John Mitchell
The largest trend in the last few years in workplace design stems from the enormously influential publication ‘Health, Wellbeing & Productivity in Offices The next chapter for green building’ published by the World Green Building Council in 2014. The report demonstrates that there is a strong link between wellbeing, workplace design and productivity. Like all good reports, the lessons have quickly become main stream and standards and guides have emerged ranging from Well, Fitwel, the BCfO ‘Wellness Matters’ and even our own Ibec with its KeepWell mark (a version of the UK Well Being Charter).
On a recent research trip to London, the manifestations of this were becoming apparent in office design. One example was the real effort to reap the benefits of biophilic design, access to natural planting have been shown to have a significant effect on wellbeing and productivity, with even small non-accessible external ledges heavily planted and small terraces and break out areas with biophilic walls.
The other manifestation was local control for occupants even in air conditioned buildings, personal control of your environment being another key recommendation. This is an emerging trend, only two of the ten or so of the buildings I visited featured it. Both however allowed occupants to open windows in their area, with sophisticated controls knocking out the air-conditioning in that area.
View some recently completed interior projects below.