What to look out for in Sustainable Flooring

Sustainable Flooring options are no longer less effective or attractive than the competition. Our eco-friendly surfacing innovations are now the preferred solution for developers across the country.

However, when choosing your sustainable flooring, you need to be aware of the true sustainability of each option. Products from some ‘eco-friendly’ companies may be less sustainable than claimed or made of lower quality materials. Therefore transparency is key when looking for sustainable products to avoid these issues of Greenwashing.

PlaySmart is here to help you make an informed choice about your sustainable flooring options. This blog goes over the key information about our sustainable products, and also, our recommended use cases. However, you can also talk to us directly by booking a call with the contact form at the top of this page.

nordic lawn
Key Statistics on the Impact of Non-Sustainable Flooring
  • Concrete surfacing and buildings emit 8% of total global CO2 emissions [PSCI.Princeton.edu].
  • Tarmac driveways are made from bitumen, a by-product of coal [ThamesWater.co.uk].
  • By 2024, it is likely that Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems will be made mandatory in all new constructions in England [freeths.co.uk].
  • Also, two-thirds of local authorities across England and Wales have pledged to be carbon-natural by 2030 [LocalGov.co.uk].
Innovative Natural Playground Ideas

Sustainable companies should always be striving to discover new ways to integrate eco-friendly thinking into their products. Therefore, innovative developments should always focus on providing practical, cost-effective, high-quality sustainable options for all.

EcoSmart Grass Mats

This eco-friendly alternative to typical rubber grass mats protects your surfaces and those using your playground equipment. EcoSmart uses recycled rubber, a sustainable option that provides a softer landing than plastic tiles or bare grass.

PlaySmart is moving traditional rubber grass mat design towards a more eco-friendly standard with EcoSmart. In addition to the sustainable materials, the honeycombed design and thick rubber make for an innovative and effective safety surface design.

Find out more about the benefits of EcoSmart natural play safety surfacing with our Free Guide to Grass Mats.

Corkeen Cork Flooring

Modern flooring is developing to include more natural materials rather than unsustainable playground tarmac or concrete. One key sustainable flooring material is cork, used in our amazing Corkeen safety surfacing

Cork is a great surface choice because it is a naturally hypoallergenic, porous, and durable material. We design Corkeen’s two-layer system to create a wear-resistant, shock-absorbent cork surface. PlaySmart’s Corkeen surfaces use only the best renewable granules and binders.

For more information on sustainable cork flooring, why not explore our Guide to Corkeen Play Surfacing?

Hybrid Natural Grass

Refurbishments of school fields and football pitches are looking for more eco-friendly ground-cover solutions than purely artificial grass. If you require year-round green grass with minimal maintenance requirements, a solution may be Hybrid Grass.

With a soft surface and natural grass look, Hybrid Grass mats are seen as an alternative to artificial grass mats or even as an eco grass option without the upkeep of purely natural grass. Using plant-based plastics where possible, the netted mats (also available as seeded mats) provide protection for real grass growth and soil quality recovery.

For a full breakdown of why you should replace your artificial grass mats with a hybrid grass option, you can also visit our new blog on why Hybrid Grass is becoming more popular in the UK.

Water Permeable Surfacing
wide grey rubber mulch pathway on golf course

An aspect of eco-friendly surfacing that is often overlooked is water permeability. Especially in built-up areas like brown-field sites, an overuse of impermeable tarmac and concrete prevents water recycling back into groundwater stores. This can cause flooding in periods of heavy rainfall and over time deplete groundwater reserves, harming local ecosystems.

As a response to this, many urban areas have set up Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SUDS). These systems use guttering, vegetation, and water permeable surfacing to encourage the proper circulation of water.

Our water permeable surfacing options involve a range of substrates and aggregates from high-quality recycled sources. The recycled rubber playground-safe aggregates used in JungleMulch and SmartPave is from aircraft and truck tires, avoiding the dangers of metal or fibre contaminants within the aggregate. They are also cured with a non-toxic polyurethane binder to avoid harmful chemicals leaching into the water. These surfaces require minimal subbase installation and for full drainage effectiveness should be paired with a porous subbase or surface such as water permeable soil.

SmartPave is our primary innovation in water permeable surfacing. This resilient, slip-resistant surface meets the requirements of UK SUDS that new housing developments and local councils should follow. Creating a decorative, practical pathway suitable for pedestrians, wheelchairs, and bicycles, SmartPave is a great addition to your outdoor area while paying mind to local drainage systems.

Are you Ready to Bring Sustainable Flooring into your Development Plans?

If you have any questions about our sustainable flooring options, including material sourcing, installation impacts, or anything else, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Additionally, you can easily book a call with us or request a free quote with the contact form at the top of the page.

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