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Fri, Aug 13th, 2021

How Biophilic Design Can Create Fresh and Exciting Office & Commercial Spaces

biophilic design on a building's exterior

We live in an increasingly urban world. People and families are forced to thrive in a concrete jungle with accents of glass and metal. This can have an impact on humans, which is why it’s so exciting that new design solutions, such as biophilic design, are becoming increasingly common to bridge the gap between urban environments and the appeal of nature.

Biophilia is the innate human instinct to connect with nature, and it’s a modern trend that is changing the face of interior design, architecture, and real estate. Rather than simply creating green buildings to reduce negative effects on the environment, biophilic design also allows the inhabitants of urban homes and offices to experience the joy of nature.

Why Biophilic Design is Essential

biophilic design applied to an office environment

As humans, we are connected to nature and everything the natural world has to offer. Humans have always spent most of their time in natural spaces, which explains our connection to plants and wildlife. Biophilia as a hypothesis suggests that spending so much time indoors without nature can have a negative effect on us physically and emotionally.

There is a great deal of research around biophilic design, with proof that incorporating nature into urban spaces can create various benefits. For example, having nature near us can help with productivity, improve mental health, and even make us more physically healthy. As a result, many architects and designers are looking at connecting spaces with nature to create productive, safe, and healthy living.

Typical Features Seen in Biophilic Design

We spend a lot of time in buildings made of metal and concrete, so biophilic design adds a softer edge to these spaces. Because every structure is unique, the answer to adding nature can vary in terms of available space, budget, and preferences. However, several features are used regularly to add biophilic design concepts to existing buildings.

  • Using locally appropriate and naturally available patterns, colours, and materials
  • Focusing on a combination of aesthetic and acoustic beauty
  • The application of several species of vegetation in clustered or scattered designs
  • Designs of space that focuses on psychological and physical impacts
  • A sense of personal privacy and shelter
  • Thermal comfort environments
  • A view of landscape inside, outside, or both
  • Exploring the application of light dynamics with both artificial and natural lighting
  • Natural scents
  • Harmonizing and bridging the gap between indoor space and the outside

The Key Features

biophilic design in the interior of a restaurant
There are several ways to create a space that works with biophilic design principles using a variety of materials and designs. Adding natural elements is an excellent idea for several reasons. These items are flexible with different designs, can be sustainably harvested and are available in any location. Adding these items to a space can create harmony between a building and its exterior features.

Consider the five natural components to build a space that looks great and makes people feel welcome. These include:

  • Air – Opening office windows and adding in ventilators is a great way to add fresh air to a space. In stuffy locations or areas where hot days are common, the inclusion of cool breezes can relax everyone inside a building.
  • Earth – Earth consists of things like stones and soils. This can be added in through the use of rounded rocks and quartz to decorate pavements and walls. Large stones can be used to mark paths or surround hedges and flowers. Stone sculptures and rounded stones are also great options. Choose several colours of stones to create artwork that can be hung on the walls of an office.
  • Fire – Adding a fireplace to a home with a chimney can be a great way to bring this natural component into a space. It works well to warm a room when the temperatures drop.
  • Water – Water can be implemented through waterfalls, fountains, and more. An example would be making a large public pond in a park for use by the neighborhood.
  • Void – Free spaces are important, especially in areas with large crowds. Parks and gardens let people take in the natural world if a view is available. Adding large windows or glass walls to offices can create a beautiful view from every level of the building.

In addition to these elements, preserved plants and artificial plants can be used to create a natural look inside that makes people feel less anxious and stressed. For example, even a few plants throughout an office building will make people feel more at home than they would in a building made of nothing but concrete.

Biophilic design is a great way to make your space stand out and feel modern. It gives people the chance to enjoy nature without leaving an urban environment. Add some plants, a green wall, wooden furniture, and other natural accents to revitalize a space and make it feel more alive.


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