When choosing office flooring materials, both appearance and functionality should be the top two considerations. Since each space has a distinct purpose, a single flooring material most likely won’t be sufficient for an entire workplace—what works in a waiting room or lobby won’t necessarily work in an office kitchen or breakroom, for example. Another thing one should take note of is how the Gridd® Low Profile Raised Access Flooring System® is constructed. Another great resource to read before you start working on your office floor design is this Beginner Guide to Raised Access Flooring.
The best approach to selecting office flooring materials is to visit each space and select materials that suit their purpose; office flooring materials should also align with design preferences and meet your budget. Let’s go over some of the primary rooms one should consider when choosing office flooring.
Lobby and Reception Areas
Durability and design are essential factors when picking flooring material for an office’s lobby. Lobbies are the first space clients, new employees, stakeholders, vendors, and other guests see when they enter a commercial property. Thus, the flooring of a lobby or reception area must make a favorable first impression. It must also be capable of withstanding significant levels of foot traffic without showing wear and tear; not only does the amount of foot traffic matter but the type of weather those feet will be tracking in. For example, if your office is in an area with heavy annual snowfall, visitors very well might have salt for melting snow and ice on the bottoms of their shoes.
Here are some great examples of durable and aesthetically-pleasing office flooring materials for lobby and reception areas.
- Luxury vinyl tiles (LVT). Realistically simulates the look of natural elements with an additional layer to increase protection against wear and tear while enhancing performance. This extra layer is composed of a thick film coat of UV-cured urethane aluminum oxide, making it smudge, stain, scuff, and scratch-resistant. The term luxury vinyl tile is sometimes reserved for flooring materials that imitate stone, marble, and ceramic, whereas the term luxury vinyl plank is used for flooring materials that mimic wood. Not only does it integrate seamlessly into nearly all interior design plans but it offers a wide assortment of finishes and design options.
- Terrazzo. One of the most famous instances of Terrazzo flooring in the United States and the world is the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Comprised of glass, granite, quartz, and marble chips, Terrazzo office flooring is a composite material that is poured in a precast using cementitious and polymeric binding. In order to give the flooring more luster, extra chips are sprinkled on top of the mix before it hardens like glitter. Terrazzo offers an abundance of design possibilities such as unique patterns or logos. Not only does it provide great durability but it’s also very simple and easy to clean. The only downside about installing Terrazzo is its high price.
- Wood finishes. Hardwood flooring offers unmatched natural elegance and goes with any decor—traditional, modern, or otherwise. The best species of wood to use for lobbies and reception areas are Oak, Maple, Cherry, Walnut, Ash and Mahogany. These species of wood offer a very hard and sturdy surface which is perfect for high traffic areas. For those who are concerned about the environmental impact of using genuine hardwood flooring (as well as its hefty price), engineered hardwood (composite wood) is an environmentally friendly alternative featuring much of the same durability and design benefits but at a lower cost to you and the environment.
Conference rooms are central points of office traffic. For this reason, conference room design cannot be overlooked; the flooring choice must be a good fit with the aesthetics of the space while being somewhat durable. With conference rooms, durability is not as important since they usually experience less foot traffic than the common areas of an office.
Here are some great examples of durable and aesthetically-pleasing office flooring materials for conference rooms.
- Luxury vinyl tiles (LVT) (described above).
- Wood finishes (described above).
- Luxury carpet tiles. Carpet is a great choice for conference rooms where sound absorption might be a concern. And even though durability isn’t as big of an issue as with lobbies and reception areas, carpet tiles do offer more durability than most other options. The only downside is that carpet is more laborious to keep clean than wood or LVT. Luxury broadloom carpets might be a cheaper option than luxury carpet tiles but one should keep in mind that it’s woven on a wide loom and laid from wall to wall. Thus, making it more difficult to use the Gridd® low profile raised access flooring system since one would have to roll up the carpet to access the panels.
Open Office Spaces
Office flooring must meet your office’s desired aesthetic design, absorb excess background noise and endure a lot of foot traffic. It needs to match the design of your building; its maintenance costs need to match your budget. Long-lasting, easy-to-maintain office flooring materials are most beneficial in common office areas. Here are some great examples of durable and aesthetically-pleasing office flooring materials for open office spaces.