Reflecting on our case study in WorldGBC’s recent Better Places for People report, it’s clear that our workplace at Victoria Street is just one of many great spaces around the world where people are becoming happier and healthier at work.
Thinking about how much my own working day has changed since the move to our new space, I rarely sit down throughout the day, I cycle five days a week and I have quick access to a GP through my iPhone. The combination of these different factors makes my day more comfortable, active and efficient, and as a result I feel a lot more productive. But whilst we’ve enjoyed the benefits of our hard work designing and delivering Victoria Street, the challenge ahead is now far greater.
Although there is a growing list of green and healthy workplaces, the majority are confined to the world’s financial and business hubs and there is still little evidence of this issue becoming more mainstream. As the world of work changes and automation makes us increasingly effective, work is becoming much more about how we think and how we interact.
This means workplaces need to be optimised for creativity and social interaction, whilst still providing quiet working space with the right acoustics, air quality and natural lighting to support cognition. And we need this everywhere, not just where developers or occupiers want to push the boundaries.
So, what can we do? This short piece is a call to arms for everyone reading to share some of the fantastic achievements in the Better Places for People report. Use these case studies to broadcast the benefits of green and healthy design to your clients, designers and engineers. The evidence is compelling, and I can’t imagine what further proof any team would need to convince them this should be central to their design ideology. It is also increasingly clear that the benefits of green buildings with strong health, wellbeing and productivity features far outweigh the costs.
As we explain in our case study our award-winning Victoria Street workplace was the first in the world to achieve both WELL SilverTM certification and BREEAM Outstanding, and incurred just a 3% cost premium.
Get out there and share this valuable resource with the project teams who need it.
Edward Vaughan Dixon
Sustainability Insights Director