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Making a sound choice: BW Workplace Experts looks to Oscar Acoustics to create health-enhancing workplace of the future

By: Ben Hancock, managing director, Oscar Acoustics.

Office fit-out professionals, BW Workplace Experts, who specialise in delivering welcoming office environments, enlisted the help of Oscar Acoustics as part of a major workplace fit-out to ensure optimal acoustic comfort for occupants and a calm ‘home from home’ experience for staff.

Central to achieving their goal of creating a peaceful office ambience was the issue of noise reverberation. It was imperative that workers using the office space could communicate easily without needing to shout and that staff could work harmoniously without distractions.

The challenge: unconventional working spaces

Located at Herbal House in Farringdon, London, BW Workplaceneeded to allow for agile ways of working, providing flexible environments that offer focused work areas, co-working spaces and relaxed break out areas. A combination of both impromptu and formal meeting rooms was also required.

Working alongside architects TP Bennett, Oscar Acoustics were faced with the challenge of how to achieve the perfect acoustic balance within the two-floor Manhattan loft-style space. As office workers would be dealing with important sensitive circumstances, such as judicial matters, unwanted noise needed to be kept to a minimum, allowing staff to concentrate and focus on matters at hand.

Leanne Baird, Head of Marketing at BW, said: “We needed an effective design solution to deal with reverberant noise so that staff remained free of distractions and their ability to concentrate was not impaired by excessive noise.

“Having worked with Oscar Acoustics previously, we knew we were in safe hands as far as finding an effective noise-reduction solution was concerned. Their expertise in architectural acoustic finishes was crucial to the success of this project.”

The solution: calm, inviting interiors that sound as good as they look

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Chosen for its ability to absorb sound energy instead of reflecting it, Oscar’s SonaSpray K-13 is a seamless acoustic spray with a deliberately industrial, coarsely textured finish that helps control stressful noise reverberation in buildings. Blending in seamlessly with the fluid, flexible workspace, the spray was completed in a single application, allowing BW to keep to important project deadlines, with minimal installation time.

SonaSpray K-13 also contributes towards many sustainable design and health certification systems including BREEAM, SKA, Living Building Challenge and adds up to 17 points towards the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating of a project. By choosing SonaSpray K-13, all parties could feel confident that the application met the highest health and welfare standardsdue its non-hazardous, GREENGUARD Gold Certified compliance for Indoor Air Quality.

Asa seamlessM1 certified Low Emitting acoustic spray, it also contains renewable natural resources such as wood, and cotton which effectively lowers the carbon footprint of the building project by sequestering rich stores of carbon for the lifecycle of the structure. In a world where environmental impact is paramount, SonaSpray K-13 boasts further green credentials, having been covered by the Environmental Product Declaration in accordance with ISO 14025 and meeting the Living Building Challenge and LEED requirements.In addition to these, Oscar Acoustics areISO 14001 certified; completing the environmental jigsawand making them Great Britain’s most sustainable acoustic solutions provider.

It was also imperative that employee safety was considered, especially in terms of fire safety. Knowing that SonaSpray K-13 not only met but significantly bettered the updated Approved Document B fire requirement (Class 0 to BS476 & B-s1,d0 fire rating),gave both architects and designers complete peace of mind that should the eventuality occur, the acoustic spray would provide little to no smoke and absolutely no droplets, assisting in the safe escape of its occupants.

Ben Hancock, Managing Director at Oscar Acoustics says: “When we were first approached by BW, we knew just the solution for this type of acoustic problem in an office space. With years of experience providing acoustic solutions to commercial workspaces, our tried and testedSonaSprayrange is our go-to choice for achieving superb acoustic results without design compromise. 

“Working with BW has been a fantastic experience. With the increased focus on wellbeing and the work-life balance becoming more prevalent, office space must reflect this change. It’s long been recognised that poor acoustics and excessive levels of noise can be bad for occupants’ health so it was great to see this issue being taken seriously, to improve the daily lives of employees using the building day-to-day.”

Pics: Oscar Acoustics- Herbal House (‘Credits to TP Bennett, BW Workplace and Tom Green Photography)

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