Forbo specified by Sheppard Robson for healthcare fit out.

For the new office of one of the UK’s leading healthcare specialists, workplace interior design specialists, ID:SR – Sheppard Robson, specified the natural beauty of Forbo Flooring Systems’ Allura Flex Wood Luxury Vinyl Tiles (LVT) to help ‘bring the outside in’.

Occupying the first and second floor of a new seven-storey Grade A office building in Leeds, the healthcare specialist has brought over 250 staff together into one co-located environment. Expertly designed by ID:SR, the 25,000 sq ft space comprises a variety of agile work and social settings to support a range of activities, a dedicated client reception, meeting suite and lounge.

Lucy Durkan, Interior Designer at ID:SR, said: “We developed the concept around our client’s vision and core principals - helping staff to ‘live longer, healthier and happier lives’. The office is filled with abundant natural light, fresh air, specially filtrated drinking water, indoor planting, noise reduction measures and the layout of the work and social spaces encourages movement and flow through the building, facilitating increased interaction, visibility and collaboration.

“To support employee wellbeing, the office also engages with the principles of biophilic design, so we incorporated natural looking materials where possible to emphasise the connection between people and nature. The beautiful and realistic wood effect of Forbo’s Allura Flex Wood LVT supported this idea of bringing the outside in. Offering convincing, authentic visuals and excellent functional performance, we used the finish in prominent positions of the office as we felt the flooring supported the overall concept of the scheme.”

Allura Flex Wood in the Weathered Oak colourway was fitted in a herringbone pattern with bursts of Seaweed Solid Oak, Charcoal Solid Oak and Smoke Solid Oak in the main reception and staff breakout areas. Thanks to its tackified installation, the high quality, dimensionally stable Allura Flex tiles provides answers to key issues such as limiting valuable downtime, the re-use of floors and minimising environmental impact, perfect for busy office spaces.

What’s more, Surestep Material in Cool Concrete was specified in the kitchenette of the staff breakout area, where there is an increased risk of slip. The safety flooring combines outstanding slip resistant properties with differentiated design and through the use of Step Crystals, the natural colourway offers a clean, fresh look and improved cleaning and maintenance properties. The PUR Pearl finish ensures that it is stain and chemical resistant.

Lucy continued: “With a heightened focus on sustainability, it was important for us to use materials with high environmental credentials and recycled content in them to create a calm work setting. Not only did we choose Forbo’s products for their performance and natural aesthetic to coincide with the biophilic design but also because of the sustainability story behind them and the company itself. These values are important to us when designing spaces and this was also important to our client.”

Made with passion, Allura Flex - part of Forbo’s wider Allura collection - is 100% phthalate free, REACH compliant and produced in Europe with very low indoor emission levels. There is at least 25% controlled recycled content in the backing of Allura Flex; minimising the impact on the environment. At the end of its service life, the product is also 100% recyclable or installation off-cuts can be collected through Forbo’s ‘Back to the Floor’ scheme.

Lucy concluded: “I have used Forbo many times before and I have always had a fantastic experience. While there were no issues on this project, I know that Julie Haake is always on hand should we need any help. The installation went really well; it was interesting to see how the fitters worked to the drawings to install the colours in each location. The client loved the look and feel of the space, which was enhanced with the Forbo products, so much so that the scheme has now been rolled out across many of the other projects that we have completed with the healthcare specialist.”

This project was awarded Commended in the Fly Forbo 2019/20 competition.