Creating Safe & Healthy Spaces with Biophilic Design
Besides function and aesthetics, one of the crucial aspects of architecture and design is the safety of the people within those spaces.
For residential spaces, those who have elderly folks or young children can appreciate the importance of safety and health, while in commercial spaces, helping to keep visitors and customers safe and relaxed is also of utmost importance.
Let’s explore how we can create a safe and healthy space within the trending 21st-century biophilic space design.
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Creating Safe Spaces
Statistically, slips and falls account for a majority of accidental injuries worldwide. These slips and falls can occur both indoors and outdoors, particularly in spaces where slippery spots are common, such as bathrooms or eateries, or where changes in elevation occur, such as staircases.
For spaces where water accumulation happens, the flooring surface is of utmost importance to safety. Smooth surfaces such as polished concrete, while pleasant when dry, pose a major risk for slips when water is present.
Therefore, when considering the flooring for such spaces, it is a good idea to account for added friction through the application of structured surface tiles, which have a slightly textured surface that makes them more grippy. You could also consider slip-stop tiles Pedregal and Legacy, the anti-slip tiles by Niro Granite, which have a smooth surface when dry but increase in friction in the presence of water, which provides safety and peace of mind for all.
Find out more about the Slip-Stop Collection.
On the other hand, in areas where changes of elevation occur, such as steps or stairs, it is important to clearly mark the edges where these changes happen. This can be done with safety tape, or for a lighter touch, strategically-placed lighting and differentiation in surface design can also help emphasize the separation between one elevation to another.
Creating Healthy Spaces
As more and more of our daily lives are spent within the built environment, it is important not to neglect the importance of connecting with nature. Studies have shown that being around nature can help reduce stress levels and improve mental health overall, which is important as the World Health Organization has reported that anxiety disorders are on the rise in recent years.
When it comes to forging a connection with nature, biophilic design elements can come in handy.
In terms of a visual connection, natural colours and surfaces such as the various shades of brown and grey found on wood and stone can help imbue a space with a calming effect. Besides that, hexagonal shapes reminiscent of honeycomb can be installed as part of a feature wall using tiles like Natural & Abstract.
Empowered by digital printing technology, Niro Ceramic Group has also successfully created wood textured tiles that not only have the convincing look of wood effect tiles but even the surface structure of authentic wood grain on collections such as ZR Barnwood and Timber by Zirconio, as well as Albar and Madeira by Portino.
Within the aural dimension, a water feature that creates the sound of flowing water is a great way to introduce a sense of calmness and tranquillity, whether indoors or outdoors. When installing a water feature, be sure to mind the safety tips mentioned above or make use of slip-stop tiles to prevent accidents in wet areas!