Today’s workforce acknowledges not only the importance of environmental sustainability, but also the importance of social and economic sustainability. Tenants are expecting, more and more, that buildings incorporate sustainable practices both in terms of design and delivery (embodied energy) and in terms of how a facility is run (operational energy). This means that it will not be enough to simply hit your bike or locker count – the space will be graded on many more benchmarks than that.
Shifting To An Ethical Supply Chain
Whether you’re sourcing towels for your end-of-trip facility, or sourcing materials for the facility itself, creating an ethical and sustainable supply chain is a must as users now expect it. In addition, more and more commercial property leaders are looking at their corporate social responsibility obligations both internally and externally in the commercial landscape today. The Australian Property Council, for example, is following the lead of the Australian Government in reporting the risks of modern slavery in their operations and supply chains, and demonstrating the actions they are taking to address those risks.
Here at Five at Heart, we love ethical supply chain thinking. In 2016, as a small Aussie company, we partnered with a NGO in Timor Leste (East Timor) to move the manufacturing of our Cradle rack from China, to produce to our knowledge, Timor’s first manufactured export. Since then, we have been expanding production and continue to provide formal training and quality job opportunities to a part of the world that truly needs it.
Opportunities to inject sustainable practices into building design are endless and simply require imagination, ingenuity, and dedication to the cause. We’re proud to work with some of the most sustainable architecture and design firms around the world who understand the environmental (and commercial) benefits of sustainable building design. ZGF Architects, for example, recently completed an impressive transformation of the former Spruce Goose Hangar outside Los Angeles, turning the space into slick new offices for Google (of course the building would not be complete without a Five at Heart bike room).
We’d be remiss not to mention the trend we are seeing globally of creatively repurposing old, unused bank vaults into bike parking and change rooms. The coolest we have seen are at 44 Montgomery Street in San Francisco and 367 Collins Street in Melbourne.