Office Architects Pitch In to Battle Obesity

October 29, 2012 — In an effort to tackle America’s growing obesity problem, architects are offering design solutions in office spaces that will encourage people to move and socialize. An article in today’s USA Today spotlights office designs that include such things as centrally-located stairs that more easily connect people and activities versus stairwells that are hidden behind doors, attractive walking trails, and centrally-located printers that encourage people to get up from their decks and interact versus personal printers. It’s called "active design," and more and more businesses are asking for it. 

"How do you get people moving?" Rick Bell, executive director of the New York chapter of the American Institute of Architects is quoted as asking. "If exercise and everyday activity is mantra, how do you, through design, get people to exercise? There is a direct relation between the built environment and people’s lifestyles."

According to the article, studies have shown that if people were to climb stairs for just two minutes per day, enough calories would be burned to prevent the average annual weight gain Americans experience.

You can read the USA Today story here.