‘Forbo products offer new lease of life’

WITH the standard repetitive fixtures and fittings no longer ticking the box for student accommodation design, Maxwell Green Design enlisted the help of FORBO FLOORING SYSTEMS to breathe a new lease of life into the communal areas of iQ Student Accommodation’s new property in Hammersmith, London.  

When iQ Student Accommodation obtained the building, it realised very quickly that the communal spaces were tired, dated and very uninspiring. As such, it approached Maxwell Green Design for its interior expertise. The result is said to be a contemporary, fun interior that will satisfy the sophisticated needs of today’s students for a long time – so much so, it went on to be awarded the Highly Commended status in the Fly Forbo 2018/19 competition.  

Lisa Green, director of Maxwell Green Design, said: ‘The student accommodation market is very different to how it was 10 years ago, with the old design model of plain and simple furniture and floor coverings that exude little character, no longer suitable for the students of today. Instead, they crave designs that reflect societal and even geographical trends.

‘Therefore, when it came to designing iQ’s new building, we took inspiration from this very cosmopolitan region of London.  

‘Within the communal area, there were many different spaces, such as a games room, study area and even a cinema room, which all required their own identity, yet needed to be connected seamlessly. While we were able to add personality to each room with furniture, wall coverings and soft furnishings, we wanted to do something striking with the floor, so it didn’t just become a backdrop.

‘As such, within the main atrium space, we specified Forbo’s Tessera Layout and Outline carpet tiles in a plank format. With this choice, we were able to create a bold, monochrome striped design that would lead the eye naturally through the space and to the various study and break out areas, while complementing the neon colour pops used throughout.’  

The Tessera Layout and Outline carpet tiles were chosen in the contemporary Mono and Frosting colourways to create what is described as maximum impact when people first enter the space. Owing to the plank format (100x25cm) of this range, the possibilities for designers to create ‘stunning’ flooring schemes is reportedly endless.

Lisa continued: ‘Within the screen room we required a softer aesthetic, so we decided to opt for a different floor covering. We chose Forbo’s Flotex Concrete planks as the velvety texture provided a comfortable feel underfoot, while being durable enough to cope with food and drink spillages.

‘We chose four different shades, Cloud, Smoke, Storm and Thunder, which were then combined to provide a contemporary twist on the traditional herringbone design. Although at the beginning iQ was nervous about the ‘concrete’ effect, they were delighted with the result.’

Forbo’s Flotex flocked floor covering is claimed to be the only product available on the market that combines the appeal of a textile floorcovering, with the practical and hygienic advantages of a resilient – making it suitable for very busy locations, like the screen room on this project. It’s available in a range of existing colours, designs, and formats including sheet, tile and plank, or designers can have their own pattern – or logo – printed onto the surface for a completely unique aesthetic.

Lisa concluded: ‘We’ve used Forbo and its floorcoverings on many projects before and it never fails to deliver, with regards to its wide portfolio of products and helpful, quick service. Time was critical on this project, as the refurbishment needed to be completed by September ahead of the students moving into the building and Forbo made it easy for us to design the flooring scheme, by supplying samples quickly and efficiently.

‘What’s more, as the products are also quick to install, we were able to complete the project on time. And it’s not just me that’s absolutely delighted with the result; iQ and the students are thrilled with the new interior, with the various amenities being used very frequently.’