Our collective experience over the past few years has highlighted the impact of the built environment on health and well-being. For many of our clients, a focus on well-being has gone from a nice-to-have to a need-to-have.
Being healthy means much more than not having disease. It encompasses a person’s whole state of being — physical, mental and social.
We have also seen the pandemic and climate change magnify health disparities that disproportionately affect our most vulnerable people and marginalized communities. Any discussion about health and well-being begins and ends with equity and inclusion.
Here some of HOK’s people describe seven strategies for designing interior spaces that support health, well-being and equity.
1. Design Spaces That Regenerate the Environment and the Human Spirit
"Health is a fundamental right for everyone, regardless of a person's background, condition or needs." — Kay Sargent, Director of WorkPlace
2. Offer an Ecosystem of Workplace Choices
"When you can choose a space that's going to make you feel better and feel more comfortable, you're better able to focus on the work at hand." — Christine Vandover, Sr. Project Interior Designer
3. Design for the Senses
"Our research suggests that truly inclusive workplaces should address the six modalities of work and create options for both hyper and hyposensitive occupants." — Micki Washington, Regional Leader of WorkPlace
4. Encourage Movement
"We aren't meant to sit all day, every day. I'm sure you've heard the saying, sitting is the new smoking!" — Mike Goetz, Sr. Project Designer
5. Provide Better Air for Better Health
"We need to work very closely with our engineers to make sure that we're designing these spaces that are healthy for people." — Komal Kotwal, Sustainable Design Leader for Health, Well-Being + Equity
6. Make Healthy Choices the Easiest Choices
"What if these these destinations were organized or planned with a journey or circuit in mind?" — Enrico Caruso, Director of Design, Interiors
7. Connect People and Nature
"Think about how interior spaces can actually connect you to the outdoors." — Komal Kotwal, Sustainable Design Leader for Health, Well-Being + Equity
Conclusion: Ensure Sustainability for All
"When we create an interior space, it must support positive connections and an equitable experience for all." — Komal Kotwal, Sustainable Design Leader for Health, Well-Being + Equity