KJ Tait


A key objective of our engineering design is the wellbeing of the building occupants.

This can often be overlooked when the design emphasis is on low energy and on the systems delivering to set parameters.

Issues in relation to wellbeing which we consider in the design and in the post completion management of buildings by our Facilities Team include:

  • Indoor air quality and ventilation
  • Artificial lighting and daylight
  • Acoustics
  • Comfort
  • Avoidance of overheating.

We also work with the Project Team on the design development to embed wellbeing in the project on issues such as:

  • Plants and connection with nature
  • Space planning which considers view out, access to stairwells, breakout areas.

We have experience in supporting WELL Building Standard and Fitwell accreditation of projects.

As Engineering Designers, we have significant opportunity to influence internal comfort. We have an increased awareness of indoor air quality and factors which affect this. We now include air quality monitors as well as carbon dioxide sensors in our project design.

Effective ventilation is important and can be modelled whether it is mechanical, natural or mixed mode.

Comfort is to some extent subjective and we consider it important that occupants have control over their internal environment. This can include internal thermostats to alter internal temperature, opening windows perhaps interfaced with the air conditioning installation, and good lighting control.

A key objective in relation to wellbeing is to avoid overheating. The move to Zero Carbon buildings has shifted the emphasis from reducing mechanical cooling to increasing natural ventilation. This change in emphasis can result in significant overheating in summer months and this is exacerbated by higher summer temperatures being experienced due to global warming.

Engagement in the briefing process with Users is important and this engagement should include a detailed understanding of the proposed use of the space to ensure the engineering systems are designed to meet this need.

Our in-house Facilities Team have been engaged by Clients to change the focus of maintenance contracts to be customer service contracts which improve engagement with occupants with a focus on creating an improved occupant experience in the workplace.