Our German office logistics teams are seeing increasing interest among developers and other stakeholders in introducing wellbeing initiatives for staff into logistics and industrial schemes. 

ESG considerations are already front and centre for many leading corporate occupiers and investors, with the awareness that commercial buildings that do not address this will see their market attractiveness diminish.   

As well as contributing to ESG goals, human-centric design also provides a source of competitive advantage for companies to attract and retain staff. Developers of logistics real estate are increasingly convinced that logistics buildings which support worker wellbeing are going to be more attractive to occupiers by enhancing their offer to the workers who are critical to their warehouse operations.  

This changing attitude reflects a better understanding of how clever design solutions and cost-effective measures which promote worker wellbeing can be included in the design of a warehouse, without compromising operational efficiency, environmental sustainability or commercial viability.  

State-of-the-art warehouses are now being designed to meet WELL wellbeing criteria as well as BREEAM, DGNB and LEED  sustainability standards.  

New Typologies  for Wellbeing 

We are no longer just designing an industrial shed for our logistics clients. In addition to sustainability features, our teams are expected to incorporate wellness elements including natural lighting, improved air ventilation, and ‘soft’ features such as elements of biophilia,  green spaces and planting. 

Space on flat roofs is being used to accommodate leisure facilities such as relaxation areas, outdoor fitness circuits, and spaces to grow plants and food. Fire paths double as running tracks, car parks as basketball courts or table tennis arenas. We have even been asked to include a pitch for playing boule.  

More and more floor layouts are incorporating leisure areas such as TV-rooms, IT-areas and bars. Where possible we position office space to face south or towards the best views such as a river, lake or woodland.  The landscape watercourses and bunds around a warehouse are used for fitness, walking and cycling trails.  

 In the UK we have recently completed a pioneering high-spec industrial warehouse for Baytree Logistics at Fenny Lock in Milton Keynes that applies WELL™ principles and our bespoke Thrive Design Drivers to incorporate environmental and wellbeing design features throughout the scheme.

At Didcot Quarter in Oxfordshire we repurposed a brownfield site into an industrial complex which puts employee health and wellbeing at its heart. 

Our Research 

Chetwoods are going further than other architects in our research to develop best practice for designing wellbeing into places and spaces. We are working with academic partners on new cutting-edge technologies that analyse human emotional response to design.  We have been trialling on live projects a data-centric approach which uses affective computing to recognize, interpret, process, and simulate human feelings, emotions and moods. This research has been recognised in a shortlisting for the AJ100 Innovation of the Year Award 2022 and in the Digital Innovation in Design category at the Digital Construction Awards 2022. 

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