Making workplace environment pleasant and energy efficient is a major prerequisite for productivity and well-being of workers, considering most of them spend a third of their day at work. The edifice design is supposed to boost the employees’ engagement and satisfaction, which is frequently not the case.
Sustainable practices have become an indispensable element of modern office set-ups. That means that all the equipment, heating system and lighting fixtures have to adhere to environmentally-friendly standards, which further improves the company’s bottom line.
A vast array of older buildings can be retrofitted into business premises today, such as former schools, warehouses, and restaurants. Here are some examples of how edifices can be transformed into ideal working quarters for the benefit of all the occupants.
Insulation and Acoustics
If you’re planning to move your business into an antique (but sturdy) building of 50 or so years, some improvements in terms of insulation and acoustics have to be made. Start with the proper insulation of the roof and interior walls, such as adding thermal mass with PMC (Phase Change Material) type of layers. You may decide to top it with an overcladding procedure if the external layout is not at its best.
Sound-proof your offices additionally with wall-to-wall carpets (not too shaggy) and any form of wall coverings that cover great portion of the wall (paintings, posters, etc.). If you’re currently on a tight budget, you can stick with thick drapes and shades/blinds for the windows.
Windows can be also equipped with wooden, argon-filled frame structures or replaced altogether with modern, energy-savvy models to minimise energy losses. If all this seems too complicated and demanding for your business premises, read on to hear about a smart and easy window treatment alternative.
Instead of replacing your windows in their entirety, you can opt for the installation of double glazed window solution and keep your current set-up. This is a simple, affordable and non-invasive means of improving the comfort of your office quarters. Double-glazed windows will help you maintain optimal temperature and reduce indoor and outdoor noise.
This type of treatment is highly adaptable to the specific position and size of your panels, and its slim design takes up minimal space. You can have your windows retrofitted in record time with tiny onsite adjustments for windows of irregular shape. The protective frame comes in a variety of colours that can fit into any office colour scheme. Last but not least, this treatment comes with a long-term warranty (7+ years), so you can be sure you won’t have additional costs in this department any time soon.
Passive Design Upgrades
One of the ways to achieve better workplace conditions is to make use of the natural light, cooling and ventilation. For instance, you can install solar panels or tubes for sustainable (supplementary) heating of the offices and natural illumination.
If you have a hefty budget for this refurbishing project, you can opt for the innovative lighting method that captures sunlight and transmits it to the office quarters. This is an excellent way to provide some natural light to the sun-starved cubicle workers. Additionally, you can install the sensors for the existing light fixtures and save great amount of energy. While you should use AC system in the server rooms and conference halls, in most cases simple airing can do the trick, if the windows are openable.
Intelligent Use of Existing Resources
If you’re striving to be an exemplar in business resource efficiency, consider using remodelled demolition rubble and existing stone, bricks and slate for the necessary repairs and top layers of hardcore infill. Redundant steel objects can be sold to a recycling facility or upcycled. To make minimal environmental impact, you can even salvage the radiators, tiles, parquet and all sorts of tiles. On the other hand, you can sell some original pieces, like toilets and sinks.
- sound use of energy
- lower utility bill
- improved working conditions
- boost of employee satisfaction and productivity
Retrofitting the office premises will create a pleasant, cost-effective environment both owners and workers can enjoy. You can achieve it in your own company quarters by following some of our remodelling suggestions.