Even before the C-bomb dropped, Brits spent 92% of ALL their time indoors. That’s less than two hours a day outside – of which 18 minutes is spent walking to and from the car.
Problem is, we know it’s beneficial to be in nature. There’s even evidence to suggest that the mere sight of greenery can reduce stress and restore feelings of wellbeing. But if we can’t lead people to nature, we must bring nature to people.
Room with a view
In 1993, environmental psychologist Roger Ulrich randomly assigned 160 heart surgery patients to one of six views: a bright tree-lined stream, a dark forest, two abstract paintings, a white panel and a blank wall.
Those patients assigned the water and trees were statistically less anxious and needed fewer painkillers than those who looked out onto the other scenes. It’s a compelling result in favour of connecting people to nature through biophilic design.
A couple of years back, Green-tech company Green City Solutions launched the world’s first intelligent biological air filter: the CityTree.
There’s one near our Soho office. At first sight, it just looks like a bench attached to a decorative living wall. But this wall has the pollution-absorbing power of 275 trees. It’s also completely self-sufficient, using solar energy to power its inbuilt irrigation system.
It’s a fantastic design that could help combat the rising air pollution in cities across the world. But we can all help by simply incorporating plants, specifically chosen to filter impurities, into our buildings.
The air we breathe
Colourful and powerful
Healthy buildings. Healthy profits
Wellness real estate – i.e. buildings that intentionally incorporate wellness into their designs – is a £100billion industry. And this figure is expected to grow by 6% each year.
So it’s hardly surprising that there are now 1,394 construction projects in the UK that have registered for WELL Certification, the gold standard for advancing health in buildings.
Access to green spaces. Naturally ventilated rooms. LED tech that works with our circadian rhythms. Soundproofing. Water quality. Even the position of power points. It all needs to be considered if we’re to create healthy, habitable, profitable structures
“Now’s the time to develop strategies for improving our homes, offices and leisure spaces.” – Olga Turner Baker, CEO, Ekkist, Specialist Health and Wellbeing Consultancy
Header image: sourced from Wardian London.
Image 1: sourced from Dezeen.