Concrete is traditionally seen as a hard cold surface, but new office buildings are contradicting this perspective by using concrete flooring designed to create a warm atmosphere.
Symantec, the computer security company’s office in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is an example of how a building can use concrete flooring to promote a good atmosphere. The intention of the building’s designers was to create a feeling of both warmth and high technology.
Floor areas define the function of spaces. Concrete floors are communal zones, and work zones are carpeted. The carpets and concrete flooring use cool colours with warmer colour accents. This is designed to create a feeling that is both warm and looks high tech.
The concrete flooring areas are sealed and polished with a distressed and blurry look, and it is this treatment that provides the warmth that a single flat colour could not produce.
Another building that uses concrete flooring is the Tealium headquarters in San Diego, California. In a similar way to Symantec, the building uses different floor coverings for different areas. Open areas are carpeted, and individual work stations have concrete floors. The concrete flooring is a natural grey colour and is textured to look warm. The floors are largely maintenance free and the designers believe that they will increase in character with wear over the years.
Concrete flooring is a traditional form of flooring that is adapting to meet the requirements of companies who want to create working spaces that encourage their employees to feel warm and cosy.