The healthy concept has become an essential aspect of modern life.
There’s healthy food, healthy living… so why not healthy architecture?
Architecture that’s healthy as well as sustainable and efficient. We’ve developed ways to manage the quality of the environment outside buildings and the footprint that buildings leave on the environment, and we think tirelessly about the direct impact that buildings and their spaces have on people and how they affect us every day.
In architecture we often talk about major concepts like PROGRAMME, FORM, SCALE, RHYTHM, concepts that help give meaning to an architectural discourse. Fail to assign them the right priority and place in the hierarchy and you run the risk of forgetting that, ultimately, the most important concept is INHABIT, that is, creating spaces where people can live. Which is why healthy architecture establishes a series of standards and a protocol to follow that champion the well-being of the future inhabitants of a space, the people who lend meaning to the word home.
Well-being and health
Based on figures from the WHO, we spend an average of 90% of our time in enclosed spaces. Which means we understand just how important it is to ensure that this time spent indoors has the healthiest possible impact.
This impact can be controlled through building design, construction and management.
Healthy architecture simply seeks to create interior spaces that serve to protect health while creating a sense of well-being for people living in them.
If we manage to build environments where the user not only feels unaffected physically and mentally and psychologically, but also environments that help to create a state of well-being and promote health, we will improve the concentration and performance of people who use these spaces, in addition to lowering the rate of absenteeism from work or school while retaining talent.
Following the outbreak of COVID-19, the fact that health depends not only on our immune systems, but also on where and how we live, was laid bare. That’s because we spend most of our time at home, at the office or indoors and health is closely tied to the environment in which we live.
WELL certification is the first evidence-based system created to respond to the need for the well-being and health of people in buildings. It is the first certification to focus exclusively on user health and comfort. Based on performance rather than prescription, it analyses eight concepts: air, acoustic comfort, lighting and views, thermal comfort, water, nourishment, fitness, comfort and the mind.
Importantly, this certification isn’t based on beliefs or theories like Feng shui and other philosophical approaches, but is grounded in scientific criteria.
Architecturally, it is important to discuss with the client the potential and the ROI of incorporating healthy architecture into each project, regardless of whether or not the ultimate goal is to earn certification.
Our commitment drives us to suggest measures aimed at creating buildings that act as preventive medicine and are a source of health in offices, hotels, homes, educational and retail spaces, exploring in depth the concepts of WELL certification.
People at the heart of what we do
Shifts towards the creation of a more humane architecture are already underway. For example:
Design criteria have been applied in hospitals and have proven to improve patient recovery.
There are educational trends that connect how space is designed in schools with the development of children’s maturity.
Offices of companies that take care of their employees, creating more humane and inspiring spaces through design, make people feel more motivated. This increases productivity.
If we want to create healthy interiors, we should bear all these variables in mind and design homes, retail spaces and workspaces from a much more human approach to architecture.