Patterned carpet is not new but its design sophistication is breaking new ground. With multiple colors and intricate patterns, these carpets were originally introduced to hide foot traffic wear and stains in large spaces. Today’s patterned carpet visuals have evolved into an art form. Carpet mills have engaged the services of big-name designers to develop exquisite patterns. The variety of standard and custom yarn colors is virtually endless. Plus, in addition to standard and semi-custom carpet patterns, state-of-the-art equipment can produce practically any visual you can imagine: small patterns, large patterns, geometrics, florals, free-forms and more!
We’ve created our own maintenance monster, in a sense, because today’s carpets are masters of disguise. The intricate patterns mask soiling and stains.The advanced fibers and backings are engineered to resist crushing and fluid absorption.New dying techniques ensure that carpet colors stay bright, vibrant and colorfast.Yarn treatments applied during manufacturing and even some after-market treatments, effectively repel stains. All this can create a false sense of security. That’s because despite the latest manufacturing technology and can’t-see-the-stain visuals,carpets still need regular maintenance to look their best.Well maintained carpets are a good reflection on everybody who touches them:
Patterned carpet now accounts for over 90% of commercial carpet installations, especially in high profile locations. The broad array of available styles and customized treatments defies description. Designers and facility managers know that patterned carpet has practical and aesthetic benefits. Functionally, patterns conceal seams, hide traffic lanes and wear, disguise stains and faded areas, and are easier to patch if damaged.Visually, patterns have evolved beyond the simple pin dots of yore to include intricate geometrics, free flowing waves, texture on texture, and truly custom design, not just custom color. Because many interior designs use the floor covering as the starting point for coordinating other finishes, patterned carpet creates exciting new design possibilities for commercial spaces.
Imagine being one of the unlucky millions of people caught in the great black out of 2003 in New York City. While many of you watched the evening news with interest, those experiencing the power outage faced emotional panic plus the risk of personal injury in pitch black hallways and elevators. Considering that slip and fall injuries in the workplace alone are responsible for almost $5 billion dollars in wage replacement and medical payments, the additional costs for injuries in mercantile centers, hotels, and entertainment complexes caused by natural and unnatural disasters gives one pause to think.
Wood has been a favored interior finish for generations. In commercial environments, this has been a love/hate relationship. Love the look—hate the maintenance and moisture issues. Those concerns can be put to rest, thanks to innovations in hardwood construction plus the introduction of laminate flooring. These products feature great aesthetics with superior physical performance and easy maintenance.
Without a doubt, it is simpler, faster and more cost effective to install new flooring under office systems using a professional lift system than to do the same job by dismantling and reassembling furniture, using jerry rigged tools not designed for the job and employing extra labor. And yet, a surprising number of facility managers either don’t know about, or don’t take advantage of flooring companies that use today’s professional lift systems.
The Grand Ballroom at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Cancun, Mexico, was aglow under thousands of twinkling starlights as StarNet members, vendors and guests gathered for their annual celebratory banquet this past April. The dinner marked an occasion the attendees look forward to every year—the Design Competition Awards. The evening capped days of business sessions, a trade fair and socializing that were as relaxed and friendly as Cancun’s beaches.
No matter what floorcovering you select, the key to a great installation lies beneath the surface. Proper substrate preparation creates the foundation for floors that look great and perform well. Taking short cuts with patches that repair substrate damage and imperfections, and with levelers that create smooth, flat surfaces, invites costly and unsightly installation issues and failures. If your underlayment is not flat, hard, durable and compatible with the floorcovering adhesive, two problems may plague your installation:
The majority of commercial floor coverings are designed to meet the general needs of the floored space. They are styled and manufactured to be aesthetically pleasing, durable and easy to maintain. But the very nature of commercial interiors, and the activities that happen in these spaces, has given rise to a new category of floor coverings—specialty floors. These products have enhanced physical characteristics and unique properties to fulfill the needs of special spaces and niche areas. Specialty floors offer value-added features and benefits for spaces where general floor coverings fall short on required or desired performance.
It may seem logical that purchasing carpet by itself, as opposed to through a qualified flooring professional, would result in a lower cost. However, carpet is not a stand-alone product. There are many additional services and expenses required to complete an installation project properly. A lower price does not necessarily mean a lower cost.
A recent national survey confirmed the increased expense of carpet as an exclusive purchase and explored the origins of these costs. The survey examined several components of carpet installation ranging from material price to management time to simple cost per square yard. The following table details these elements based on an average installation of 1,000 square yards. The resulting cost increase was between $3.55 and $7.21 per square yard.