The office Jungle and why it might help get staff back to work

The office Jungle and why it might help get staff back to work

18 September 2020

 

 

Interior Landscaping

We are so lucky here at Smartscape, we get to design interior-scapes & install plants in some of the most amazing spaces. Our projects are transformative, elevating beautiful yet bland interiors to interior jungles!

Interior planting used to be based around the humble pot plant – we still use these too, there are wonderfully crafted planters from around the world to introduce into schemes along-with bespoke planters created by artisans such as Outdoor Design and Atlier Vierkant. Now we have Fytotextile we can introduce plants on all of the vertical surfaces too, creating living columns, living walls, wall sections within mobile planters for screening, living ceilings, the options are extensive. Mixing both cutting edge and traditional planting methods enables us to create varied schemes, which include plants from ground level to the ceiling!

Our cities are vibrant and exciting places, living and working in London brings with it a certain pace – as we move from home to work to socialise (safely!) with the added layer of a global pandemic hanging over our heads the pressure to stay safe is ever present – frankly just getting to the office can feel like a labyrinthine challenge! Knowing as we do the benefits that specifying plants in interiors can bring to building users, now more then ever it is important to consider how to incorporate green into the workspace.

Here is quick reminder of the benefits of plants in interiors.

  • Plants reduce stress. Being close to greenery makes us feel more at ease, and we experience less stress when there are plants around us. Good to calm us down and enable us to focus on the working day and be productive!
  • Improved air quality. Plants reduce unfriendly VOC’s improving interior air for better health.
  • Increased well-being.
  • Reduced Acoustics – we all know that feeling when it is too noisy to think right?
  • Plants bring an aesthetic WOW factor which enhances any space.

Could it be that by creating calmer plant filled spaces, the desire to return en-masse to the office could be boosted, could plants make the office feel a lot calmer and safer, could smart plant design delineate social distancing parameters – allowing staff to relax into their work and enjoy the office space rather than be fearful of it?

At the start of the pandemic with strict lock down measures enforced, many of us were riveted to our home office – whether that is a room you have for yourself or the kitchen table, home was where it was at! Rumours circled about the death of the office, empty office properties and how no one would ever go back! This initial knee jerk reaction has calmed, but things are definitely going to be different. A mix of both home and office working seems to be the way forward for the time being, The isolation of home working is not a fix all, offices are collaborative places for team development and creative thought, colleagues often form the bed rock of many workers social lives, human connection is important – being without that foundation can have a very negative impact on even the most resilient person as loneliness creeps in.

Perhaps now in the ‘new normal’ we should be asking what the purpose of the office space is rather than whether commercial businesses should even have one, and enhance that space as much as possible for the health (both mental and physical) of the building users.

 

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