How Flooring will Change Post-COVID

Trends in flooring to adapt to new workplace realities and consumer fears

The pandemic has permeated virtually every aspect of how we live, play and work. Yes, even down to the floors we walk on.

As businesses begin reopening to customers and employees, they will need to adapt to new workplace realities and consumer fears. What trends can we expect in commercial flooring? Here are what we see as some trends on the horizon.

A Desire for “Home”

For the past seven months or so, home has been the center of work, entertainment, exercise and socialization for most of us. We’ve become accustomed to the reassuring, calming, protective comforts of home.  As people reenter commercial spaces, whether as employee or as customer, they want to feel those same comforts. According to Shaw Contract’s Reesie Duncan, vice president of global design, the “quiet” incorporation of materials, textures and seamless transitions between areas will enhance a sense of calm and contentment.

”I think more and more people want to go through a space without any kind of harsh changes, whether it is pattern, height, or texture. I think that’s for both hard and soft surface,” she recently told Floor Trends magazine.

Social Cues Incorporated

Flooring will play a key role in wayfinding and supporting social distancing. LVT and rubber flooring offer endless design options to help separate employees passing in a hallway and direct the movement of interior traffic. We’ll see manufacturers expanding their options for interesting shapes and colors to compliment branding or the interior design scheme. These materials can be individually cut on site and firmly integrated into the floor.

In addition, manufacturers will factor six-foot spacing into product design. At Shaw, for example, “Our floor tiles are divisible by six,” said Ashley Olson, design director at Shaw Contract Workplace Studio. “I am thinking about the six‐foot space that we’re going to need to maintain when we return to the workplace. With the floor, there’s a real opportunity to communicate that distance and how you can respect that space.”

A Priority on Easy Clean

The saying goes, “cleanliness is next to Godliness,” and there’s a ring of truth to that in the next-normal environment of commercial spaces. While beauty and functionality will always be key factors in flooring selections, cleanliness and hygiene take on heightened priority. Notes Amtico Flooring, whose resilient products Intertech Flooring specifies and installs, “Put simply, choosing materials that can withstand heavy cleaning and offer protection against bacteria – such as nonporous surfaces and bleach-cleanable fabrics – will provide long-term benefits that last beyond the pandemic. In particular, Luxury Vinyl Tile is a practical, hygienic and highly durable floor product that’s ideal for commercial spaces.”

Want a flooring partner who knows the latest trends and products? Talk to Intertech Flooring’s experienced team for objective, honest advice and extraordinary results.  Contact us.