Shopping centres often boast significant feats of architecture, however the demands of being open to the public seven days a week and attracting thousands of visitors means that the challenges of heavy foot traffic risks spoiling a site’s appearance.
It is important for the floor to create an inviting ambience while being durable enough to ensure that the foot traffic won’t cause a floor failure. Additional benefits such as slip resistance can help to optimise the floor’s functionality by enhancing the site’s health and safety levels.
The shopping centre floor also needs to be easy to clean so that the maintenance routine can keep the site both hygienic and visually attractive.
With so much to consider when specifying for such a big project, it is tough to differentiate exactly which attributes are important for the flooring in all the different areas, but it is paramount that each environment is assessed on its own merits to avoid running into floor failures further down the line.
Seamless resin terrazzo is an increasingly popular flooring choice in modern commercial developments. This is in no small part due to its pleasing and attractive finish that combines a long life expectancy with design versatility. Resin flooring has the ability to create a sensational visual impact within each area of a shopping centre, from the shops and walkways to the back of house spaces and even the car park.
Seamless floor coating systems in shopping centres should also offer abrasion, scratch, wear and stain resistance, as otherwise the initial appearance of the floor will quickly be spoiled.
Commercial kitchens and food courts require sanitary surfaces that meet the set safety standards so as to avoid contaminants and bacteria spoiling the produce. As well as this, systems in these areas should be able to withstand the stringent cleaning regimes that are required to fully remove food residue and dirt.
Such environments can receive a substantial amount of wear from the scraping of chairs, dropped utensils and equipment, heavy foot traffic and spillages, so it is important that the flooring here is robust as well as hygienically efficient.
Often a mere afterthought when plans are drawn up, the shopping centre car park provides the first impression to most visitors, as it is usually the first part of the site that they see. As well as being aesthetically attractive, the deck coating system must protect the parking structure from fuel spillages, tyre marks, cracks and water ingress.
There is so much to consider for facilities managers, architects and consultants when refurbishing or building shopping centres, but getting the floor right in each area has to be a priority, otherwise the foundation on which you are building may not be a strong one. When specifying flooring it is important to look at the big picture and the long term rather than just the immediate bank balance and costs to ensure that the site has an effective, long lasting floor finish.