Terms like “light and bright”, “airy” and “spacious” have long been used by marketers trying to sell, or let, commercial property.
And while such words may have become platitudes by their over-use, the truth is that more than ever, these are things which the modern office worker values and benefits from. Far from an abstract concept about what people want from their workplace, there’s now plenty of evidence to suggest that people will be happier, healthier and more productive in a space which has optimal levels of CO2, lighting, temperature and sound. These are factors which have shaped the design of Kirkstall Forge.
For example, when CO2 levels go up, we tend to feel drowsy. When this is done subtly, strategic thinking can be reduced by up to 15 per cent. Extrapolating that figure from the individual, to the entire workforce, turns it into a major concern for any business.
Similarly, temperature plays a big part in productivity, with figures showing a drop of between 3 and 10 per cent when conditions are above 28C. Even things like daylight play a part, with good access to light – be it via large windows, exterior spaces, or both – improving things like sleep patterns and happiness.
For the real estate industry, the challenge is to make offices which not only satisfy today’s workers, but look ahead to the future and how technology can be used to address increasingly important factors like air quality, light and sound. At Kirkstall Forge, these issues have been priorities throughout the design and construction process, so you’ll find floor-to-ceiling windows, well-laid out workspaces and plenty of breakout areas. The unique location of Kirkstall Forge also means those who live and work here have plenty of access to beautiful outdoor space.