Category Archives: Green Office

Office Trends 2019

The past few years we have seen the rise of biophilic design into the office with elements of nature being incorporated into commercial buildings. This is a continuing trend as the lines between office and home become more blurred, and we predict that one big area of office design we’ll be seeing in 2019 is the growth of greenery.

Planting For Productivity

There have been several well documented studies carried out on how plants can increase productivity and reduce stress in the work place. The more connected we feel with nature, the happier we are, and with happiness comes more effective working.

We’re not advising clients to incorporate entire forests within their work spaces though; another study found that just adding one plant per square metre caused employee performance on memory retention and other basic tests to improve substantially.

Further research reveals that up to one in five people have no natural elements within their workspace, and yet employees who work in environments with natural elements reported a 15% higher level of well being, are 6% more productive and 15% more creative overall.

As yet we are unaware of any evidence surfacing that suggests that adding plants to a work place has detrimental effects on staff, and the studies listed here are just some of the more well known. There is over-riding evidence that plants are good for health, well-being, productivity and creativity whether that be at home or at work.

With this in mind, we believe that 2019 will see a large increase in businesses incorporating natural elements into any design project they undertake, and what better way to do this than by adding plants?

Five Ways To Create A Greener Office

The majority of businesses understand the necessity for a greener approach, and here at 20six we have been actively encouraging and promoting sustainable solutions for all forms of commercial property refurbishment and maintenance. It doesn’t need to be a huge financial undertaking on your part to make your current office environment more sustainable but there are areas that you can look into to help make your work place greener.

Of course, if you are planning on a major refurbishment of your commercial interiors then getting the greener approach in at the beginning will make life a lot easier, but if you just want to make a few changes we hope that you’ll find at least some aspects of the list we have compiled helpful.

5 Ways To Achieve a Greener Office:

Let There Be Light: Studies have demonstrated that workers who are able to have natural day light in their offices are happier and less susceptible to fatigue. Having natural light will help shave costs of your energy bills and create a more productive work force. When daylight isn’t an option there are energy saving LEDs and you can install automated switch offs to lights when a room is vacant, or you can encourage “best practice” among your workers by getting everybody to turn off lights when they are not required.

A Splash Of Colour: A quick way of sprucing up your work space is to give it a new lick of paint. This can help brighten the space, make it look less shabby, more loved, and can give your environment a new lease of life. There are eco-friendly paints that you can use for this, the best of which are plant-based, water-borne paints, followed by plant-based, solvent-borne ones with natural solvents. Not only will they be better for the environment, but they won’t give off any unpleasant smells or cause any breathing issues among staff.

If Walls Could Breathe: Modern houses have to meet strict guidelines for insulation, but some of us are less lucky in our older offices. If an office fit out is on the horizon, make sure you think about insulation – both for temperature control and for noise. Ensuring that your offices are at an ambient temperature by properly insulating them will save you a load off your energy bills. If this is not an option for you there are still ways in which you can tackle temperature issues and address noise problems at the same time, such as eco-friendly panels, partitions and cladding.

Put Down Roots: Adding plants to commercial buildings has become really popular of late – and with good reason. In an ideal world you’d have the budget to add a living roof or wall (both of which can provide the insulation we mentioned above), or convert and outside space to create a garden, but this isn’t suitable for all companies. What pretty much most of can do though is to add more plants within the office. The addition of plants to a work space has been shown to boost productivity as well as to help purify the air.

Teach and Learn: Having everybody singing from the same song sheet will help your overall strategy for creating a more sustainable office, so ensure that all your staff are aware of the company policy towards the environment. What are you throwing away, what more can you recycle? Are we all turning lights, taps and unused equipment off? Where are we buying our products, our office furniture, our stationary from and can those who supply us provide greener alternatives? If you can get the entire company on board even the little changes will go a long way to achieving a greener office.


Five Simple Ways To Create A Greener Office:

1: Use natural light where possible

2: Utilise eco-friendly paint and other environmentally friendly office materials.

3: Ensure your offices are well insulated.

4: Add living plants where ever possible

5: Educate all staff and adopt a company-wide sustainable culture.


 

Solar Glass In Commercial Design

Beautiful, sustainable and cost efficient? Increasing your commercial property’s ROI.

Smart city business centres are populated by buildings with beautiful glass facades. The look allows for the light to get in to the workers inside, reflects the sky and surrounding area and lends itself to a sleek, smart exterior.

Whilst a desirable building material, it’s had its issues – energy efficiency being one of the big problems.

One way around this is the use of solar glass.

5 Reasons To Use Solar Glass In Commercial Property Design:

The Glass That Gives: Number one in our list has to go to the most obvious reason for choosing solar glass – it generates electricity. The types of glass and power generation can be designed to your particular building and requirements, but glass that gives you power is going to help the finances in the long term.

Moderating Light and Dark: Solar glass can help you achieve industry regulation light transmission levels, shading and glare control. By utilising thin-film modules, UV wavelengths can be absorbed, whilst also reducing bleaching and other negative effects the sun light can have shining through glass.

Wired For Sound: Solar glass has to have a multi-layered structure, and this necessity of design makes for great sound insulation.  If you are in a really busy and noisy area, the sound protection levels can be adjusted by increasing the thickness of the glazing and their component layers.

Running Hot and Cold: We’ve all experienced times when we are sat next to a glass window in the summer and it has been way too hot, or in winter where we can almost feel the cold creeping into us from the glass – solar glass negates this and has great heat transmission control. The thermal insulation can be used to provide heating as well as to enhance ventilation systems.

Beauty Without The Beast: Glass is a timeless, classic, beautiful material, but has always had its drawbacks. We’ve covered how solar glass can out perform standard glass above, but there is the added element of aesthetic design. Solar glass can come in a variety of colours, shades and effects enabling you to maintain the consistency of your branding even with your external commercial design.

There is a definite trend in commercial design to incorporate glass, be it external or for internal divisions. Utilising solar glass will help you achieve the look you want, a more sustainable work place environment, and will help lower your energy bills in the long-term.

Sustainable Office Design

How Can I Make My Office Greener?

If you have the luxury of setting up new offices you can ensure that all aspects of design, fit out, and office furniture and fixings are green – but what can you do to make your current workplace more sustainable?

We’ve come up with four ways that you can help make your office greener.

4 Ways To Make Your Office More Sustainable:

Water: There’s the obvious not leaving the taps running, but you can also adapt your current set up by incorporating low-flow taps and toilets. New systems for managing the flow of water are always evolving so it’s worth checking every now and then if there are more things that you can do to help conserve water.

Lighting: Again, the obvious is to use natural light where possible, but sometimes that just isn’t possible. It is estimated that a total of 15 to 30% of energy costs are used up by office lighting. Switching to LED light bulbs is an instant energy-saver as they consume just 10% of the energy of incandescent bulbs and last as much as 40 times longer.

Recycling: In addition to recycling your waste products wherever possible, you can go green on your office furniture and fittings. More sustainable materials such as recycled wood, cork, and natural fabrics can be incorporated in your office furniture, flooring and more.

Insulation: This plays a part in temperature control, keeping your workspace at an ambient temperature, but also for acoustics. Internal partitioning can help manage temperatures, as well as helping to reduce noise. A properly insulated office can significantly reduce energy costs.

Creating a more sustainable working environment will benefit your business directly by reducing your overheads and keeping your employees happy. If you would like some help or advice on making your office greener then please get in touch with us.