Housing economist Brad Hunter has written how developers are responding to COVID-19, at a time when we have to physically distance, but still keep people socially connected.

He has identified ‘health driven’ innovations that will help sustain sales in 2021, and how residents now favour ‘a lavish outdoor experience without leaving their building.’

Outside influence

The pandemic seems to be fast-tracking changes in the design of residential buildings, with developers focusing on how to better integrate healthier environments and expand the use of outdoor spaces.

Housing economist Brad Hunter believes this will help developers to attract buyers now and sustain future sales. Commenting on designs for 2021, he notes: “Many of them are pivoting toward layouts that reduce the likelihood of microbe transmission such as more and larger balconies, outdoor/rooftop common spaces and touchless elevators for high-rises, and private ground-floor entrances for garden-style developments.”

Green is good

We know that additions such as a roof gardens makes economic sense, as they help with energy savings, reduce stormwater damage and can even extend the lifespan of a roof.

Yet without doubt, the biggest immediate impact on extending the amount of green spaces for residents is in terms of a building’s appeal. Put simply, beautiful and practical outdoor spaces attract buyers.

Green fingers

Roof gardens and roof terraces do demand specialist landscape construction expertise. Issues such as weight loading, wind loading and fixing details are all key considerations, as well as which plants, seating and surfacing materials will stand the test of time.

At Valley Provincial, we have created and installed roof gardens and terraces for many different developments. As construction in 2021 looks set to feature outdoor environments that can enhance health and wellbeing, this may be a permanent change that we can all welcome.

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