Dulux Trade partners with BRE to further evidence the power of design

Dulux Trade has announced a partnership with BRE to explore the impact of colour and design in a range of built environments.

The first project to launch is Chris and Sally’s House, a project designed to develop solutions for an ageing population. It is estimated that some 850,000 people in the UK suffer from Dementia and 70-80% of people living with Dementia continue to live in their own homes rather than in any specialised form of housing or dedicated care environment.

Working with the BRE Trust, BRE, Loughborough University, Halsall Lloyd Partnerships and Liverpool John Moores University, Dulux Trade is supporting the development of a demonstration home to present evidence-based design, adaptation and support solutions that allow people to age well at home.

The Dulux Trade colour schemes used within Chris and Sally’s House have been developed as part of an holistic occupant-centred design consideration, evidencing how wall coatings are able to transition from simply delivering core functional performance or aesthetic requirements, to making a valuable contribution to the wellbeing dimension of a specification brief.

Inclusive design encourages the application of colour to enable occupants to more readily identify different areas of the entire living space – balancing their needs alongside the needs of their carers or family and giving them greater confidence to move independently within their living spaces. Careful consideration of colour combinations are also central to the set of accessibility design features. Colour has also been used within the design solution as way of reinforcing positive personal connections and to provide stimulation within the space.

A second collaboration with BRE is the Biophilic Office Design project, a wellbeing and productivity pre and post occupancy research study, in which a number of partners, including Dulux Trade, will combine their innovative products as part of the application of biophilic design principles.

This study seeks to introduce design interventions that improve the health, wellbeing and productivity of staff based in a building at BRE’s offices in Watford. The re-design of the office will be led by Oliver Heath Design, incorporating an emphasis on access to nature and natural light, materials and textures, as a counterbalance to the extended hours spent in the built environment.

The refurbishment is due to start in January 2019 and the post-occupancy data will provide the building sector with vital information about how we revise design specification, to maximise occupant outcomes as well as building function.

Dulux Trade is participating in these BRE-led projects as part of its commitment to gathering evidence on how colour and design can transform spaces and therefore the lives of the people who use them. These BRE innovation projects align with the aims of Dulux Trade to understand how to impact users through colour and design frameworks developed with specific places or sectors in mind. The ultimate aim is to adapt design to match the building owners’ objectives, the building’s function and importantly, incorporate occupants’ needs.

Paul Fleming, marketing manager contractor/specifier for Dulux Trade, says, “As market leaders we are proud to work with BRE, who are leaders in their field and pioneers in the built environment. This partnership is an important focus for us. We have been investing substantially in research, working to develop frameworks for different spaces and demonstrate, with tangible results, just how powerful colour and design is in the built environment.

“Our Smarter Spaces initiative has gone from strength-to-strength, helping teachers and children thrive in their school environment, with schools designed to support better teaching and learning and we are making real cut-through in the healthcare space too.”

Dr. David Kelly, Group Director, BRE comments, “Dulux Trade and its colour experts have been instrumental in a number of projects, which we hope will deliver evidence-based results to provoke real, lasting change in the way our environments are designed across residential, healthcare, educational and commercial spaces.”

Earlier this month Dulux Trade received a prestigious national award for its pioneering work in healthcare. The ProCure 22 awards – which recognises best-in-class suppliers delivering within the NHS procurement framework – awarded Dulux Trade its Collaborative Working award.

The award recognises the work of Dulux Trade in developing its Colour & Design principles for use in healthcare environments. Endorsed by the Department of Health and supported by 16 colour schemes, the Dulux Trade Colour & Design principles demonstrate the benefits of good design, supported by research to allow designers and colour consultants to make informed decisions.

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