Category Archives: Green Office

Biophilic Office Design

Biophilic Office Design

We’ve discussed the effect that interior design elements have upon employee productivity and performance in several of our blog posts now. This isn’t a new “fad”, it’s supported by scientific studies – and common sense. Creating an office environment that you enjoy being in will naturally enhance your workday.

What Is Biophilic Design?

One way in which to make your workspace more amenable is to incorporate biophilic design concepts, be that for the entire office or just including elements within your space. Put simply, biophilic design integrates natural elements such as plants, wood, stone and water.

How To Add Biophilic Elements To Office Design

There are a whole host of ways in which you can enhance your working environment by bringing in natural elements. We've come up with four ways in which you can bring biophilic design into your offices.

Lighting: Studies have shown that employees who have access to natural light at work remain more alert and more productive than those who have only artificial lighting around them. Natural light is important to our circadian rhythm, so where possible use natural light in a controlled fashion to enhance and compliment any artificial illumination.

Flooring: Whilst we need to bear longevity, sustainability and costs in mind, a wooden floor brings elements of natural warmth to a room. There are good reasons why vinyl flooring comes in wood ‘effect’: wooden office flooring is a timeless classic, and is a hard-wearing, low-maintenance investment.

Plants: From a simple pot plant here and there to an entire living wall, plants will help make your office environment appear less sterile. Having real plants dotted about your office is something most businesses can achieve relatively cheaply, and demonstrates to your clients that you have the ability and the desire to care for things.

Furniture: Your office furniture can take on biophilic elements as well – office desks, chairs and other items can incorporate natural materials such as cotton canvas, linen, leather and wood.

Making your working environment feel more welcoming doesn’t need to cost the earth – we’ve listed just four elements that can assist, but if you would like any more help and advice for your office revamp then please do get in touch with us.

Urban Office Garden Design

City Garden Office Design - The Green Workspace

Living in our temperate climate we are a nation obsessed with the weather. It's finally turned warmer out there and you can witness the difference a bit of sunshine makes on the smiles of those you pass on your way to or from work.

But we are also a nation of workaholics: Those of us who work in offices spend on average nearly five hours a day sitting down without moving and 9.3 hours per day in total at the office. When the weather is kind to us a lot of us who work these long hours miss out on the best parts of the day.

So it was of interest to us to read about the urban office garden design schemes that are becoming "the norm" in New York, including vertical and roof gardens for office workers, and even bee keeping facilities.

And then there is the development of the "Greenhouse in the sky: Europe's biggest urban farm" on the rooftop of the empty 1950s office block that once belonged to a Dutch telecommunications company.

Nearer home, we know that Google's London office has a "secret" rooftop garden where some of the employees grow veggies, and there are plenty of other city based office buildings who are embracing the "green office" within the space that they have.

With reports that the average UK worker spends around one third of their working life feeling stressed, the benefits of making the most of limited space to bring a flash of greenery to a cityscape begin to add up. In addition to improved employee engagement and productivity, urban office gardens help reduce carbon emissions, improve the property's value, and even reduce noise entering the building.

Needless to say, the option of adding an urban garden to your office is limited by the space that you occupy. Nonetheless, if you do have room, up on the roof or a disused backyard, why not consider turning it into a green office extension?

20six have helped a range of businesses develop and furnish their office garden spaces, so if this is something that you would like assistance with then please do get in touch with us.

UPDATE: In the last few days Facebook have released images of their Seattle Office which has a rather splendid urban office garden....