- Sustainable Office Fit Out Designs: How to Incorporate Eco-friendly Materials into Your Workspace
Sustainable Office Fit Out Designs: How to Incorporate Eco-friendly Materials into Your Workspace
May 12, 2021 by Kirsten Delcie
The world is shifting into an eco-conscious era where sustainable, eco-friendly living is at the forefront of every individual’s mind. From the food we consume to the types of chemicals used in our cleaning products, people are committing themselves to make better, healthier choices for their own sake, as well as aiding the preservation of the environment.
The corporate sector especially is taking on the responsibility to ensure that office spaces are equipped and fitted with sustainable, eco-friendly materials and products to do their part and maintain a healthy setting for employees and clients.
Businesses who are undertaking an office fit out project – whether in a new space or upgrading a current one – are incorporating sustainable materials in their interior design to reap the numerous benefits, which include saving money, improving employee wellbeing and, naturally, helping the environment.
But what are sustainable materials and how do you find them?
This article explores how to choose the best office fit out materials for your interior design.
Where can you use sustainable materials in your office fit out?
It might seem like the least interesting aspect of the office fit out process, but choosing the right flooring for your workplace is more important than you think. There are so many factors to consider when weighing up the different options available – including the material’s durability, acoustics, slip factor and lifespan – and sometimes it can seem impossible to find a type of flooring that covers everything your office needs and is still sustainable.
It’s difficult, but not impossible. Sustainable flooring options include:
- Carpets: If you’re keen on carpeting your office, materials like wool, sisal and jute are sustainable alternatives. Or if you want something more traditional, recycled carpet tiles can be used as an eco-friendly substitution for new ones.
- Bamboo: As a sustainable flooring alternative to timber, bamboo is now widely available and shares similar characteristics to hardwood. Plus, it’s a durable material that’s easy to instal and looks great in corporate environments.
- Polished concrete: The exposed industrial look is a new trend in interior design and a sustainable, eco-friendly flooring option. It has a long lifespan, is energy efficient and is great for trapping and releasing heat. Not to mention that it’s aesthetically pleasing as well.
- Recycled timber: If you’re set on using timber for your hardwood floors, you can find second-hand or recycled and reclaimed timber instead of buying it brand new.
- Natural lino: Not to be confused with vinyl, natural lino flooring is a durable, long-lasting material made from a biodegradable and renewable resource.
Learn more about the importance of flooring in an office fit out by reading our blog “How to Choose the Best Office Fit Out Flooring”.
As with flooring, the materials used in your office walls are important. However, materials that are traditionally used for walls are typically not sustainable or eco-friendly. Alternative environmentally friendly materials that can be used are:
- Reclaimed or recycled wood and metal
- Precast concrete slabs
- Sheep’s wool insulation
- Limewash (products made from natural ingredients)
- Tadelakt – a sustainable, eco-friendly Moroccan plaster
- Clay plaster
Ceilings perform many functions in the office – they keep the space covered; help regulate acoustics and even add to the aesthetic. Fortunately, they can also be made out of nearly any material – so why not opt for the greener option? Choose from:
- Mineral fibre: Fibre panels are made out of naturally occurring resources, making them an eco-friendly option.
- Metal: The mining, milling, and fabricating metal production process makes it one of the least sustainable and eco-friendly materials. However, using recycled metal panelling systems are a much better, eco-conscious alternative.
- Wood: When choosing wood as your ceiling material, make sure that it is sustainably harvested rather than imported as an eco-friendly alternative. Better yet, why not use bamboo instead?
Partitions and doors
Office designs of the past and present – and most likely the future too – incorporate partitions into the layout of every workplace. Partitions are vital to a functional workplace, and whether permanent or temporary fixtures, it’ll pay off, in the long run, to craft them out of sustainable materials. Bamboo, recycled or sustainably harvested wood, glass and eco-friendly acoustic panels are just a few of the options at your disposal.
Read more about the importance of office partitions in our blog “How to Choose the Best Office Fit Out Partitions for Your Business”.
Contemporary furniture designs have embraced sustainability, with many products now being made from materials and fabrics that are better for the environment. Shop for pieces crafted from reclaimed or recycled materials, like wood, glass and iron.
Or better yet, joinery professionals and bespoke furniture specialists can use old furniture, materials and objects and repurposing them into new, better pieces that can be incorporated into your office fit out. They can also create unique pieces of furniture or workstations by upcycling materials, like pallets.
Need some help?
If you’re lost and in need of some help, you’ve come to the perfect place.
The best start to your office fit out journey is to find a fit out contractor who specialises in the corporate industry and has experience and knowledge with sustainable projects.
But where do you find this specialist?
Contractors.Direct offers a curated database of thoroughly vetted, quality contractors who can bring your vision to life, on time and on budget. Get in touch with us and we’ll be happy to connect you with the right people for the job.
Like what you’re reading?
Get fresh monthly tips to start & grow your LLC.