Office Design Gears Up for Cyclists
Office design is evolving with better storage and shower facilities for pedal-powered commuters. We think it’s a wheely good idea. Do you?
You only have to set off on your morning commute or step out onto the street to see that cycling is becoming an increasingly popular method of transport. Soaring fuel costs, the rising cost of living, salary squeezes and the fitness factor are all contributing to Britain’s growing obsession with pedal power.
On top of that, concerns about depleting fossil fuels and environmental damage is another key driver that’s encouraging more commuters to take up the handlebars to get to work.
Of course cycling to work is nothing new. Back in 2011, we reported on the growing trend of cycling and the daily pitfalls faced by two-wheeled commuters. Lashing rain and howling winds aside, cyclists continue to face the daily drama of irate drivers and close calls on Britain’s roads.
But one thing that really caught our attention recently is the idea that offices are now being designed with cyclists in mind.
In 2012, the British Council for Offices (BCO) commissioned a report entitled Cycling and the Modern Workplace. It surveyed 160 people across London, Birmingham, Manchester and Bristol to glean the cycling habits of office workers and the attitudes of architects towards this growing ‘green’ trend.
The results found that one-fifth of respondents work in offices where there are no facilities for cyclists. Unsurprisingly, showers were the most sought-after workplace facility, followed closely by lockers and secure cycle storage.
Interestingly, the study found that the provision of cycle facilities at work actually sways the career choices of more than half of respondents. The quality of cycle facilities was also a considerable influence. Furthermore over 92% of respondents said that there has been an increase in demand for cycling facilities at the office in recent years.
Most respondents believe that the provision of cycling facilities at the office is “well on the way to being regarded as the norm”.
The Architects Journal (AJ) states that the provision of cycling facilities “makes business sense” and believes that in the future, office buildings will see a much more integrated design and layout to provide better and more widespread facilities for cyclists.
“Once government grasp the economic benefits of nurturing cycling, it is anticipated that funding opportunities will be released to meet increased demand,” a spokesperson for the AJ added.
Many serviced offices now provide cycling and shower facilities as standard, particularly in city centres and in Central London. But there is certainly room for improvement in UK office properties across the UK. This is an evolving trend that we look forward to seeing more of, and we hope to see more offices gearing up for cyclists’ needs in the very near future.
Do you cycle to the office? How do you think your office can improve on its provision of cycling facilities?