Have you ever wondered how your business can balance sustainability and eco-friendliness with your business space’s overall design? As a commercial business owner, you may already know that using sustainable resources to construct commercial properties is the way of the future. Learn how your business can benefit from a sustainable and environmentally friendly design below.
What Is Sustainability?
Before you can adequately consider how sustainable designs may benefit your business’s commercial space, you’ll first want to understand what sustainability is.
A sustainable design aims to effectively meet all of your business’s needs while also being considerate of the environment and the space your commercial business surrounds. Seeking to meet your own needs without compromising the finite resources of future generations is a fantastic approach to being as sustainable as possible.
6 Sustainable Building Design Ideas
Wondering how to make a commercial building design more sustainable? Now that you know what sustainability is, it is time to apply the practice to commercial building structures. One of the most common misconceptions about sustainable designs for a commercial business is that it is expensive or cost-prohibitive. In reality, a sustainable design should lower utility costs and be more affordable for your business over a longer period of time.
Consider these six sustainable commercial designs when planning construction on your commercial space:
1. Maximize Natural Light
While some sustainable designs require specialized materials, utilizing natural light is a simple way to help the environment and reduce your utility costs.
Maximizing natural light in commercial spaces isn’t anything new. Up until the 1950s, natural daylight was the primary source of lighting in most buildings due to the costs and lack of availability of electricity. Commercial and residential buildings were specifically designed to usher more daylight into spaces by utilizing higher ceilings and larger windows.
By designing your commercial structure to take advantage of natural daylight, you can reduce the amount of electricity you utilize for lighting and the utility bills associated with them.
2. Build Smaller Spaces
Having a sizeable commercial space may seem like the ultimate success story. After all, the bigger the space, the more successful the company, right? Well, not necessarily.
Smaller commercial spaces are more energy-efficient and sustainable than larger spaces due to the less square footage that must be heated and cooled. Smaller commercial spaces have a lower ecological footprint, and you’ll spend less time and money on cleaning and maintenance. You can save money, time and energy and apply it to other areas of your business.
Sometimes, less really is more. And in sustainability and cost-saving terms, this is absolutely the case.
3. Use Natural Siding Materials
What your building is made of and the materials that protect it from the elements can make all the difference in the sustainability of your commercial building space. As you aim to balance the aesthetics of your storefront with the eco-friendliness of the material it is made from, you’ll have a wide array of options and factors to consider.
Several factors can determine how sustainable material is, including how long the material lasts, if you can recycle the material and how much maintenance and upkeep is required.
One of the most sustainable types of natural siding is wood. Products such as bamboo sidings are natural insulators and affordable. Additionally, bamboo and other wood siding types have a low environmental impact and can last for over 100 years if properly maintained. That being said, you might consider sustainable bamboo building designs excellent long-term investments.
4. Create a Small Environmental Footprint
When it comes to sustainability, one of the most important factors to think about is how your commercial business space impacts the environment around it. A great way to consider the environment is to be aware of what nature might be disturbed for your business to be successful. An eco-friendly commercial building design will aim to leave as little of an environmental footprint as possible.
Consider utilizing natural elements when constructing your commercial building, such as natural thatch, bamboo and eucalyptus poles, to ensure your building space blends seamlessly into the environment around it.
The better your building blends in with its surroundings, the more sustainable and environmentally friendly it can be.
5. Use Long-Lasting Materials
A commercial building can have all of the attributes of an environmentally friendly structure. Still, if it isn’t designed to last for an extended period, it simply isn’t sustainable enough.
Structures with long-lasting elements, such as siding, are more sustainable because they require less maintenance and less energy in producing replacements. Additionally, having structures built to last is more cost-effective, as you will be less likely to pay for repairs or replacement pieces over time.
Long-lasting products are more sustainable, and they’re more efficient. A company that doesn’t have to focus on renovating or repairing key pieces of its infrastructure can focus its time, energy and resources on optimizing how it runs. Your business is a well-oiled machine. Ensure what your business is made from matches the same quality and care.
6. Incorporate Natural Ventilation
A key area of sustainable architectural design in commercial buildings is natural ventilation. Most commercial buildings push air throughout the structure using mechanical means, such as an HVAC system. On the other hand, natural ventilation supplies fresh air from the outdoors and pushes it into indoor spaces.
A natural ventilation system helps reduce environmental impacts caused by mechanical systems, such as a high carbon footprint and energy emissions.
Naturally ventilating air throughout a building is also more cost-effective than using an HVAC system because it cuts back on the costs associated with electricity, mechanical repairs and other operating costs.