Home to over 17,000 students, the University of Surrey is continually transforming its campus to create inspiring environments. For one of its most recent renovations, the university wanted to create a space to promote student wellbeing.
The University of Surrey is committed to embedding sustainability across all its operations, teaching and research, so its partners must share that ethos. Through its third party-verified Carbon Neutral Floors™ programme, Interface’s flooring goes further by being carbon neutral across its entire lifecycle. In addition, their LVT products are made with 39% recycled content. As the flooring is modular, single tiles can be replaced as needed, avoiding unnecessary waste.Installation of the project
The University of Surrey wanted to offer its 17,000+ students a space different to any other on campus; an area accessible to all students where they could switch off, temporarily forget about learning and recharge. Interface products help to create positive spaces which impact end user wellbeing and reconnect people with each other and nature, making them the perfect manufacturer to supply the 450m2 of flooring for the wellbeing centred design.
The team selected Interface’s Human Connections® to create interconnecting pathways that resemble moss, stones and paths – elements of greenery we find in urban environments. To implement zones and encourage wayfinding, Touch & Tones carpet tile was also introduced using colour and texture to create engaging environments.
To meet the practicalities of high footfall, Barricade 2 was specified. The barrier matting protects floors from dirt, reducing maintenance costs and increasing the lifetime of the flooring. It also improves air quality by trapping dust particles, therefore contributing to the overall health and wellbeing of students and staff. To create an immersive environment, Look Both Ways™ LVT was also used. This collection includes playful patterns while still offering the durability required for high-traffic spaces. The combination of the 0.55mm wear layer, embossing and Ceramor™ coating delivers superior surface performance and minimises scratching.
Neil Hornsey, Senior Project Manager Planning & Development at the University of Surrey, said “As a university, we have a proud history steeped in innovation and we want to support and inspire our students in every way we can. This means working with partners who are constantly pushing the boundaries of innovation, so Interface’s smart and sustainable flooring was the perfect choice.
We understand that the key to wellbeing for our students is ensuring they have downtime and the opportunity to switch off from the pressures of university life, which is why the creation of the wellbeing space was so important to us. The space needed to be immersive and elevate wellbeing, encouraging students to reconnect with each other and with nature. We also wanted to ensure that the space was accessible to everyone. We couldn’t be more grateful to Interface, Morgan Lovell and MPM Flooring for helping us bring to life our vision to life. We now have a space that will help to improve the lives of our students and the world around us.”
Overcoming the challenges
The teams from Morgan Lovell and MPM Flooring were up against the clock with just four weeks during the summer holidays to complete the 450m2 installation before the new term started. During this time, the teams had to account for a week of exams in which they could not work throughout the day due to noise restrictions, meaning work had to be completed outside of standard hours. The easy–to–fit design and format of Interface products means the tiles are simple to lay, replace and maintain. This helped the teams facilitate a coordinated and collaborative approach to ensure the project was completed on time and the flooring was installed in just 2 weeks. Despite the non-standard patterns, the modular nature of the flooring system enabled the teams to efficiently install the products alongside each other without the need for bridges or connectors. To ensure the flooring achieved the perfect surface level and for extra durability, the team applied screed and installed a layer of plywood before fitting the flooring.
Main contractor: Morgan Lovell
Subcontractor: MPM Flooring