Did You Know:
A major design trend when constructing new labs or renovating existing ones focuses on creating flexible, customizable spaces.
Many tools enable researchers to do their best work—in that same vein, the space itself is a tool to enable research. Looking beyond specific tasks can help a team avoid designing rigid environments that would lock in task-oriented operations and lock out modifications to meet the changing needs of researchers. Designing for flexibility creates a space that can evolve as the research activities and the tools to execute those activities evolve. As important, flexibility in the lab fosters creativity, giving freedom to explore new questions with the right tools.
In addition to the day-to-day flexibility and functionality of individual spaces, the adaptability of the building over its life cycle is crucial. As new equipment, technology, and work styles enter the profession, adaptable spaces can undergo minor renovation to facilitate change. Future functionality allows spaces to go beyond the efficiency of multi-functional spaces in the present.