EDGE Olympic becomes first building to receive new wellbeing certificate

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Nicola Byrne

The smart building developer has been the first in the world to be awarded Platinum WELL Certification through the WELL v2 pilot for its headquarters at EDGE Olympic.

EDGE technologies moved to its HQ a year ago, across the road from the original The Edge which was widely considered the smartest office in the world when it completed in 2014.

The building performance criteria for a WELL-certified space includes air, water, nourishment, light, movement, thermal comfort, sound, materials, mind, and community.

EDGE’s founder and CEO Coen van Oostrom said: “Our headquarters show that we can build the workspace of the future and that it’s possible to incorporate people-centricity on a holistic and a personal level. This enables us to optimise health and wellbeing through the built environment and unleash human potential. We are more than proud that our efforts are awarded the world’s first WELL V2 Platinum Certification.”

EDGE Headquarters

EDGE Olympic isn’t a new building, it was previously a post office. Instead of demolishing the building, EDGE redeveloped it. As a result, no new raw materials were needed.

The materials in the old building that could no longer be used were given a new purpose within the latest version of the building. Old natural stone that surrounded the building, now serves as flooring on the ground floor.

Edge Olympic Exterior

A smart digital infrastructure gives employees full personal control over their environment, allowing them to adjust workplace conditions, such as temperature and lighting, through an app set according to personal preferences. The building has constant environmental monitoring thanks to 15,000 sensors which monitor indoor climate performance.

Edge Olympic's App

All workplaces in the building are brightly lit with natural daylight shining through glass facades, glass atria, and a minimum of 500 lux ceiling lighting. Adjustable circadian lamps support the spaces where less daylight is present.

Materials and furniture used throughout the office have been selected to meet the VOC (volatile organic compound) emission requirements of WELL and EDGE’s own sustainability ambitions, regarding circularity and keeping a low carbon footprint. VOC is a measure of air pollution for materials such as paint and other products which break down into particles over time.

The office floor was designed with different needs in mind: creating workspaces that support both various meeting types, and solitary work through closed-office spaces, acoustic and visual privacy screens, a no-call library, and phone booths.

Edge Olympic Working Spaces

HR policies and employee benefits have been matched to the wellbeing requirements of WELL, including stress-reduction programmes and limited availability times for employees, during which they are discouraged to answer the phone.

Healthy working is integrated and optimised with ergonomic workspaces, comprised of sit-stand tables and adjustable chairs and screens.

Physical activity is stimulated via the in-house gym, company bikes, open staircase, and walking-meeting suggestions.

Employees can also find a meditation room, an abundance of plants, as well as bi-weekly massage sessions and hammocks to nap in.

WELL Building Standard

Launched in 2014, the International WELL Building Institute, IWBI, is hoping to lead the global movement to transform buildings to help people thrive and is currently being pursued in 55 countries worldwide.

Version two of the certification was launched to set a new global benchmark.

Rachel Gutter, president of IWBI said: “EDGE’s headquarters is a pioneering example of how health and wellbeing can be integrated throughout the workplace and a testament to our evolving flexible, localised approach to certification. This incredible space demonstrates EDGE’s commitment to improving the health and wellbeing of its employees and serves as inspiration for others to follow.”

EDGE technologies is set to move into the London market after acquiring 60 St Thomas Street, on London’s South Bank, for £50m.

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