Wellbeing And Nature

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Updated: December 21, 2020

Top of the agenda for commercial buildings as more look to bring the outside in.

With research proving our built environment has a significant effect on our overall wellbeing, there has been a steady increase in the use of decorative timber in commercial spaces, such as offices, libraries, hospitality venues and retail stores. The materials surrounding us on a daily basis that offer a deeper connection to earth and nature, such as the natural beauty and uniqueness of wood are being embraced by designers for this reason. While some building materials can look hard and cold, the warmth of timber brings a sense of nature and wellbeing into public buildings, and offers a certain luxury. Materials and patterns mimicking nature can help achieve a sense of comfort and happiness, which is at the core of biophilic design. Rather than a trend, architects are incorporating biophilic design as the next standard in commercial buildings. By leveraging natural materials such as wood and stone, designers can achieve a sense of wellbeing and visual connections with nature without necessarily having outdoor spaces. This can also be done by utilising organic and biomorphic shapes and forms, live plants, earthy textures and colours, natural lighting and ventilation.

The natural visual appeal of timber in commercial and retail spaces aids in lowering stress levels, creating a healthier environment. What’s more, due to its natural insulation timber reduces internal heat gain in summer and loss of warmth in winter, and can store and release moisture, which helps to regulate humidity and air quality in an indoor environment.

From the natural blonde of Hoop Pine, to the deep rustic tones of Spotted Gum and walnut colourings of Blackbutt, Big River Group offers a variety of naturally beautiful timber options. All of which are known for their interesting texture and hardwearing finish, adding warmth, style and individuality to a space.

The extensive use of Big River Group’s own native hoop pine plywood for interior walls, ceilings and cabinetry, provides a clean, natural look, and can merge interiors throughout a public space. The premium decorative plywood is predominantly used in the commercial sectors and is popular with architects due to its warm, blonde varied tones with a clean grain and smooth texture. Plywood ceiling and exposed timber trusses are a celebration of light, material and craftmanship, and are ideal for appearance and structural grade applications.

A stunning and smart choice for cabinetry and joinery applications that achieves a natural aesthetic is Big River’s ArmourCab, a new generation of engineered Australian decorative wood panelling. Available in Blackbutt, Spotted Gum and Hoop Pine timber finishes, each with its own natural colour and markings, ArmourCab adds harmonious design and plays an important role in marrying the indoor and outdoor spaces.

Combining the stunning intimacy of native timbers with the rugged durability of a precision-engineered structural product, Big River’s Armourpanel is a decorative plywood and another popular choice due to its distinctly natural appeal. Also available in a range of native species including Blackbutt, Flooded Gum, Spotted Gum and Sydney Blue Gum, its durability makes it ideal for use in hardwearing areas, including flooring, wall panelling, screening, cabinetry, ceiling linings and joinery.

The award-winning Brisbane Airport by ARKHFIELD architects chose a variation of Big River’s Spotted Gum engineered timber and is the centrepiece of the design, lending a warm aesthetic and almost domestic feeling to what is often a very commercial and transient space.

Installed by Formosa Constructions, the product was also chosen due to its local origins and sustainability, as well as being stable and durable, making it perfect for the air-conditioned building. The timber’s unique, warm finish helps enliven the interior space and showcases the sunny, vibrant and welcoming nature of Queensland.

Armourpanel, ArmourCab and Hoop Pine is manufactured in Australia under the Plywood Association of Australia’s third party audited quality control program and Milled from managed regrowth and plantation forest hardwoods. It is Australian Forestry Standard (AFS) certified.

Big River Group is a wholly Australian owned and operated company.

To download a brochure or for more information on Big River visit www.bigrivergroup.com.au