Human resources services provider, HeadFirst Group, has unveiled its new headquarters in Hoofddorp, Netherlands. Architectural firm, Fokkema & Partners, renovated the former ANWB building.

In accordance with sustainability at HeadFirst, 1 950m² of Interface’s Embodied Beauty™ carbon-negative carpet tiles were specified throughout the space, connecting the building with the values of the company.

A natural choice

The architect, Estelle Batist, and her team at Fokkema & Partners were tasked with transforming the new office building into a truly sustainable hub that also supports its employees’ wellbeing. After a successful introductory meeting, the question of suitable flooring arose at the initial design stage.

Batist commented: “We have been working with Interface for quite some time now. We know that the products look good, live up to performance expectations and that the manufacturer is leading the way with its sustainability work. This new collection from Interface, Embodied Beauty™, fits nicely with that ambition.”

Addressing key sustainability issues

One of the key concerns in terms of sustainability was to reduce the CO2 emissions produced by the renovation. In line with sustainability, the Tokyo Texture style of the Embodied Beauty™ collection in Ash was specified to reduce the carbon footprint of the space by more than 17 000kg and delivers a timeless, organic aesthetic.

Willem-Paul van der Burg, account manager at Interface, explained: “The bio-composite carpet backing used in Embodied Beauty™ is made with bio-based and recycled materials. Quest™BioX uses special yarns and proprietary tufting processes to store more carbon than any previous carpet tile.”

Reuse of materials

To boost sustainability credentials, Fokkema & Partners reused various materials and components – including the existing railings and ceiling panels, which were kept intact with only minor modifications.

Prioritising collaboration through design

HeadFirst Group prides itself on connecting people. To ensure the space reflects the company’s values, Fokkema & Partners prioritised collaboration and creativity for the team’s new office. The space is central to the process and the connection between users is realised through the voids and stairs, providing a physical and spatial connection.

The vertical connection is reinforced with a high-slatted wall over three floors. The horizontal connector is the floor, forming a basis for an open working environment. Subtle differences in the tone of the floor were introduced to make zones recognisable, along with their connection to an agile working area or a meeting area.

Importance of user’s well-being

The space’s impact on the end-user’s well-being was essential, including a healthy working environment and sustainable, healthy and innovative solutions.

Good views, daylight, acoustics, a gym and yoga room, a sports bar, shower and changing rooms, lots of greenery, variation in work and meeting spaces, and inspiring graphics were incorporated.

The Embodied Beauty™ collection was the perfect choice for this space, as its sound absorption qualities reduce the sound impact between the different floors and open-plan design.

Key project details

  • Interface’s Embodied Beauty carbon-negative carpet tiles used throughout the space.
  • Innovative, sustainable flooring reduces CO2 creating a sustainable hub good for the employees’ well-being.
  • The Tokyo Texture style of the Embodied Beauty™ collection in Ash, reduced the carbon footprint of the space by more than 17,000kg.
  • Bio-composite carpet backing in Embodied Beauty™, made with bio-based and recycled materials, with the newest version of this backing – CQuest™BioX – uses special yarns and proprietary tufting processes to store more carbon.
  • User of space is central to the whole process: The connection between users through voids and stairs provide physical and spatial connection.
  • Vertical connection reinforced with high slatted wall over three floors.
  • The floor is the horizontal connector, forming a basis and connecting different zones.

Images courtesy of Lucas van der Wee

Full acknowledgement and thanks go to for the information in this editorial.

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