The 15-minute city: what could this mean for the future of work?
As products are developed and redeveloped, ease is the name of the game. Watches no longer just tell the time; they track your fitness, receive phone calls, and hold photos. Robot vacuums mean we don’t even have to be in the house to keep it tidy. We all want convenience in our daily lives, so why don’t we apply this to all the places we visit every day?
Right now, urban sprawl means people are only getting further and further away from the things they need. By 2030, urban areas are expected to house 60% of people, increasing the demand for cars and impacting the environment negatively.
The future of urban life
Imagine having everything you might need in your day-to-day life only 15-minutes away. Whether it’s the workplace, shops, or the doctor, the 15-minute city, sometimes also called the 20-minute city, suggests that all these necessities should be within easy reach, contained within local districts. The pandemic highlighted the need for people to access their daily needs easily in walkable and liveable neighbourhoods. Being able to experience things such as nature, work, and entertainment should be readily available to everybody.
In this vision of the future city, the new office would need to be an integral part of it. Some of this change is already happening. Destination workspaces that support transport infrastructure, partner with local businesses, and offer accessible green spaces are already helping to create a neighbourhood where employees and the community can thrive together.
What does this mean for the office?
In the 15-minute city, the office has the potential to become an integral part of and influence on the local community. This could bring numerous benefits to the workspace:
- Helping hit net carbon zero targets – making areas walkable, bikeable, and easily connected to public transport make peoples’ commutes emit significantly fewer carbon emissions.
- Attracting top talent – good transport links, a thriving city hub, and top-tier amenities – it’s a great way to bring fresh talent to the workspace.
- Matching employee needs – people have new expectations of their workspaces that extend beyond the building. An office near daily essentials such as food shops, restaurants, and green spaces will draw people into the office without leaving them wanting more.
- Boosting employee wellbeing – a variety of space and amenities, including outdoor areas and a connection with the local community, can help people destress.
- Being part of something bigger – remote working revealed how much proximity enables an important sense of community. Having these close-knit neighbourhoods brings everybody together, including within the workspace.
How could this concept redefine the office as we know it, and how has it already started happening?
The 15-minute city envisions a connected future, with expansive and easily accessible transport networks. Workspaces will be linked to the rest of the community, making the morning commute a headache of the past. This also includes making spaces accessible to those with different physical needs.
A closer-knit city means more people will choose active commutes. Many offices today already support this by offering bike racks and showers for those walking, cycling, or jogging to work.
Varso Tower boasts 750 bike stalls for people who cycle to work, whilst DSTRCT.Berlin has a bicycle garage with 800 spaces.
Becoming one with nature and the community
Green spaces form an essential part of these neighbourhoods for people to reap the benefits of being near nature. By providing green public spaces, the office can become a central and rewarding part of the community. In some places, this is already happening…
Nivy Tower has a boulevard featuring green trees and sculptures, while Varso Tower, the tallest building in Poland, features a public observation deck offering unrivalled views of Warsaw.
More than a workspace
In the 15-minute city, the office can become more than a place of work. Extra amenities in and around the workspace, such as shops, restaurants, and fitness rooms, get right to the heart of the 15-minute city concept – ease. People don’t have to travel far to have a meeting with clients or catch up with friends over lunch.
The Nivy Zone not only has many amenities, from shops, a bus terminal, and a fresh food market – all within a walkable distance, embodying the core of the 15-minute city.
The 15-minute city represents the future of urban life. The workspace should be designed to meet real peoples’ needs, giving them the opportunity to get the most out of their day. But why stop there?
Get ahead of the curve and embrace these ideals today. Our workspace experts can work with you to create a tailor-made destination office that adapts to your needs. Or step into one of our fitted-out and centrally located buildings to discover the benefits of a community-connected destination office ready-made.
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