2019 – the year of healthy building

As most people spend 90% of their time indoors[i], our workplaces and homes have a significant impact on our lives.

A building – whatever its purpose – has the potential to be life-enhancing in how it supports our physical and mental health.

“There’s been lots of talk about healthy buildings but we’re determined to make 2019 the year of action,” says Adrian Judd, Steico director. “We’re all about the future of healthy buildings and Futurebuild 2019 is aligned with that.

“We’re going to make a concerted effort to get the UK construction industry – all of us – building healthier – homes, offices, factories – by being aware that ‘there is another way’.  That ‘other way’ begins with better materials, processes or techniques.”

What’s clear is that in an ideal world everyone wants their building to have low energy consumption, zero toxicity, maximum fire safety and highest possible indoor air quality.

2019 – the turning point

There was a turning point in 2018 when the ideal world met the real world.  Natural materials were finally able to compete ON PRICE with synthetic alternatives making them affordable for all.

The case for natural building materials enhancing the performance of a building is proven.  They offer a myriad of advantages over their synthetic competitors but what stand out is how they are often easier and quicker to use and greatly improve the health of a building and its occupants.

Quick wins – 3 cost-equivalent swaps for a healthy building boost

  1.  Starking – Steico Universal used to sark an existing roof over Steico Flex and Steico Protect as the internal facing board. The tongue and groove sarking boards are fixed through the tile battens
  2. Insulation – Steico Protect Dry used on a board roof supported by OSB over Steico I joists ventilated via a dry ridge system on a Tata steel roof. [Credit Kithurst Builders]
  3. Sheathing – Steico Protect M used to externally clad the wall beneath an external cavity and block wall faced with flint using lime mortar. [Credit Kithurst Builders].

Why healthier buildings are good for people:

  • Healthier internal environment – enabled by great design and healthy products.
  • Higher indoor air quality – natural materials contain no harmful chemicals and are vapour-permeable helping keep occupants in good health.

Maximise natural light which helps regulate sleep cycles and

Natural building materials give you a higher performing, healthier and more efficient building right down to they generate less waste.

One day all buildings will be built this way so let’s make 2019 the one where people – right across the industry – started raising the UK’s standard of living healthily.

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[i] https://healthyhomesbuildings.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/HHB-APPG-White-Paper-V1.pdf

Ii https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/urban-expeditions/green-buildings/benefits-of-green-buildings-human-health-economics-environment/