If you’re looking for a stylish new office space, it’s easy to assume that the best course of action is to find an empty piece of land and have something purposely built. That, however, is not necessarily true.

Renovation – in particular adaptive reuse – has become a popular consideration in recent years because it helps conserve land and reduce the growth of urban sprawl. With the population increasing at an exponential rate and construction sites constantly popping up to deal with the growing need of the public, any potential renovation projects ought to be welcomed with open arms.

Adaptive reuse involves the renovation of a building with the intention of using it for a means that it wasn’t originally built for. Offices can be made out of factories, courthouses and other structures that offer a spacious layout, so long as they’re still structurally sound. The renovation of more historical buildings can help companies distinguish themselves from others through the distinctive appearance of their workplace, both inside and out. Adaptive reuse strategies often focus on combining the old with the new by retaining certain features of the building’s previous use when modernising the space, finding creative ways to transform and preserve the site’s history.

Urban centres, where a large variety of companies seek offices, provide an excellent stock of older buildings prime for renovation. These are a lot more cost-effective to reuse rather than tear down and reconstruct because it requires less materials to get the job done. It also means that less waste is produced in the process.

There’s been a strong interest in sustainability lately because of how well it shows off companies to their consumers, displaying them as environmentally responsible and helping promote their business. Given biophillic design has become more of a common feature thanks to the benefits that nature in the workplace provides to employees and clients, choosing a building that has been sustainably refurbished is a good first step for promoting this positive image of a company.

Certain considerations still have to be taken with adaptive reuse, particularly in relation to the value of the property from a historical and societal standpoint, as well as the relative safety of the site after a period of being unused. However, while these buildings may not have the freedom and assurance of modern architecture at their disposal, the benefits they provide outweigh any delay that checks for safety and other problems might bring up.

After all, it’s better to modernise and make use of something that already exists than to go to the effort of building something entirely new.

James Darvill

James is a passionate scriptwriter and reluctant poet with a talent for the dystopian. When he’s not staying up late watching the Simpsons he’s beating the world at Mario Kart, always with a glass of wine in hand.
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