A proposed update to the Guide to Specification from the British Council of Offices (BCO) looks set to change the way workplaces are designed in a post-pandemic world.
The aim of the BCO’s guide is to inform its clients and their designers about how best to specify the performance of the new workspace. It also seeks to help industry practitioners provide office space that functions for occupiers and helps them to conduct their business in safe, healthy, comfortable, and productive workspaces.
The intention of this update to the BCO Guide Key Criteria (the first BCO Guide was published in 2019) is to: ‘reflect changes in design thinking over the last three years, taking in the climate crisis, the drive towards net zero carbon (NZC), COVID-19, moves to hybrid working, changes in regulations, and improvements in equipment performance’.
One of the most high-profile of updates is a proposal for a base level occupancy criterion of 10m2 per work setting and space utilisation of 60% for typical office use. This compares to the de facto application of the 2019 Guide recommendations of 8m2 and 80% which were originally intended for intensively used space. This suggestion is directly related to the impacts of the Pandemic.
Several of the recommendations in the update have a direct link to Priva and our portfolio of cloud-based and hard-wired building automation technologies:
- Lower average occupancy densities
- Reduced small power and lighting load allowances
- New criteria for office lighting and daylighting
- Revised lift and toilet provision and new sustainability targets
- An extended range of structural grid sizes
- Improved ventilation, with a higher rate of outdoor air supply per occupier, and better indoor air quality
Priva offers a CPD presentation aimed at building engineers and consultants on the topic of healthy buildings and indoor air quality. If you’re interested to hear more (or to book in for a CPD), please drop us a line. You can also view our White Paper on Healthy Buildings on our main Corporate site.