Sustainable services: Cool Carpet®
Design services: Concept Designer
When Queen Mary University London looked to refresh the lecture theatres and teaching rooms at its Mile End site, the institution called upon global sustainable flooring expert, Interface, to help develop a contemporary, yet environmentally conscious teaching space for students.
The refurbishment project, which was led by Queen Mary University London’s in-house design department, had a complex set of criteria from the outset. Renowned for its vibrant, world class research, the University design team wished to develop a learning space that reflected this bold, innovative approach. In addition, with the University seeking to reduce its carbon footprint and minimise environmental impact, sustainability was paramount.
Interface proved the perfect partner for Queen Mary University London due to its unrivalled focus on design and sustainability. Indeed, setting a new standard for the industry and pioneering transparency when it comes to sustainability, Interface is the first manufacturer in Europe to offer an Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) for two of its most popular carpet tile products: Straightforward and Elevation II.
To support Queen Mary University London’s inhouse team in fulfilling its project objectives, field designers from Interface conducted a series of site visits. Gaining an in depth understanding of project objectives and aspirations, the team then developed a unique specification using a wide range of solutions.
The first of these was Straightforward, which was laid in the lecture theatres. A random design ‘microtuft’ carpet tile that can be installed nondirectionally, Straightforward increases design and installation flexibility, minimises waste and simplifies maintenance. Setting the standard for sustainable design, Straightforward uses up to 50 per cent less yarn than standard carpet tile products, and is manufactured using electricity from 100 per cent renewable sources. It also comes with Interface’s Cool Carpet® guarantee, whereby all carbon emissions generated throughout the lifetime of the product are offset.
“The University has a forward-thinking approach to development and innovation, so by working with a company that shares this ethos, we’ve achieved an impressive finished result. As well as helping us meet our design requirements, Interface has supported us in achieving and exceeding our sustainability objectives. Due to this level of support, along with the company’s high specification products, we’ve chosen to work with Interface in the second phase of our refurbishment project.”Emanuel Nibo, Queen Mary University, London
For entrances and walkways within the project, Interface’s Transformation was specified. Inspired by Biomimicry – the art of learning from the colours and patterns of nature – Transformation is a tufted, patterned, structured, loop-pile carpet tile containing high percentage of recycled nylon. As with Straightforward, Transformation enables non directional installation, meaning maintenance is simplified and waste is minimised.
In addition to Straightforward and Transformation, the company’s Lima, Chenille Warp and Heuga 530 products were chosen to offer practical, hardwearing, yet high-design, solutions for the corridors and the high traffic areas within the lecture theatres and teaching rooms.
As well as addressing sustainability, Interface supported Queen Mary University London in achieving its design objectives. Using Transformation’s wide colour palette, the field designers developed a strong, contemporary scheme, which complemented the University’s colours – blue and green. To give the corridors and classrooms a real design lift, Lima, a product inspired by the colour and vibrancy of the Peruvian capital, was selected in La Molline and La Milla.