In our latest blog, we talk about biophilic design in architecture and why this design trend is one that is set to stay.
According to statistics, we spend over *90% of our time indoors which mean we’re missing out on all the many benefits that nature can bring us. It’s widely accepted that by connecting with nature, we can expect to experience reduced stress levels, enhanced creativity and improved wellbeing. What’s not to like?
What does it mean?
The term biophilia stems from the Greek meaning “love of life.” Biophilic design is an innovative way of designing the places where we live, work, and learn. In essence, it simply involves incorporating elements of nature into the fabric of your building to benefits its inhabitants.
Which elements are used in biophilic design?
There are a number of different elements that are used in design which tend to include the following.
Natural materials: Where possible to incorporate minimally processed materials with rich textures and patterns that reflect the local ecology and come from sustainable sources like wool, wood, stone etc.
Natural light: A key feature in biophilic design to bring the outdoors in with windows, doors and skylights. Where natural light is not possible, artificial light sources can help to recreate a natural feel. Dynamic lighting which plays with light and dark contrast using shades and shutters will also help make space come to life.
Sensory stimuli: Design elements that reference nature, for example, scented plants, tactile materials, plants positioned in breezeways to create a natural sense of movement all help to create a natural and airy feel.
Plants: Incorporating greenery into the very fabric of buildings can be credited with boosting both physical and mental well-being by creating new connections with nature. Studies have found that having a plant in a room increases productivity and cognitive attention, as well as acting as an air filter.
Water sources: Water sources such as fountains, ponds and water features will add interest to a building and encourage people to connect through sight, sound and touch.
Why it's so important
It’s clear that by satisfying our innate desire to interact with the natural world, that people from employees in offices, guests at hotels, or even in peoples’ homes, they will tend to lead happier and healthier lives by connecting with nature.
Also with the United Nations predicting that 60% of the world’s population will live in urban city areas by 2030, biophilic design and architecture, along with environmentally sound building solutions, we expect this will be at the forefront of the architectural community’s collective mind for a long time to come.