A mezzanine floor is a simple and cost effective way to increase the footprint of your workspace. Whether you need additional storage or desk space, adding a mezzanine means you don’t have the hassle and expense of moving to a new, larger space.
If this is something you’re considering, it can be tricky knowing where to start. You’ll probably have questions around planning permission, building regulations and design/build that all need answering. So to help, here’s our 5 steps for designing a mezzanine floor.
1. Get the Right Permission First
Before you get started with the design process, be sure to get the necessary permission. As mezzanines don’t alter the outside of buildings, it is rare that local authorities will need to grant planning permission for this type of construction.
However, there are certain circumstances where this will need to be checked. It is worth speaking to your local authority if any of the following will apply to the mezzanine you plan to construct:
- External alterations will be needed to install the floor
- It will be larger than 200 sqm
- The floor will be used for retail
- It will accommodate workspace.
As this process can be a little confusing, at ACI, we take care of this for our clients and can advise and apply for the necessary permission.
2. Check that your Mezzanine Complies with All Building Regulations
When installing a mezzanine, you’re making alterations to your workspace and so, all the necessary building regulations must be considered. They help to ensure your plans are structurally sound and comply with health and safety laws.
UK building regulations for mezzanines cover structural safety, fire safety, protection from falling and access to and use of buildings. These checks are something your supplier should go through and provide, so you can rest assured the necessary precautions have been made.
3. Consider Access
As you progress onto the design stages, one of the first things you’ll need to consider is access. This will need to comply with the fire and health and safety stipulations laid out in the building regulations you will have covered.
When it comes to aesthetics, there are plenty of options. If your workspace is in a factory environment or has more of an exposed, stripped back design, you’ll likely want to consider a steel staircase which can be painted to suit the space.
If your mezzanine will be in a more formal office setting, a higher specification staircase can be designed to suit the overall aesthetic.
4. Think about the Practicalities
This will depend very much on the purpose of your mezzanine. So, at this stage in the design process, consider the more practical aspects. For example, if the mezzanine is to be used for workspace, will you need partition walls? Where will your power access be? Will you need toilet access on that level? Is lift access required? Make a list of all the practical elements so you can run through them with your designer.
5. Consider the Overall Aesthetics
Once you have all of the necessary permissions, you’ve checked the regulations and have mapped out the more practical aspects, you can start thinking about how you’d like your new floor to look.
If it’s for a practical purpose such as storage, this stage in the process will be pretty straightforward. However, if you’re designing a new workspace area, you can explore new interior ideas and create something that will really set your office off. New colours, vibrant accessories and furniture can all create an entirely new vibe and give your existing workspace a new lease of life.
If you’re thinking of installing a mezzanine in your workspace and would like some further advice on how to get started, we’d be happy to help. Call us on 0115 697 1705 or visit our contact page.