Ede, The Netherlands Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Client: Toyota Material Handling Nederland and Raqtan
Typology: Product Design
Discipline: Product Design
Firefighting resources for a building are generally poorly designed. Fire hose reel cabinets are red coloured and fire extinguishers are visible in strategic places. The resources are always designed in such a way that they are immediately visible and available to the users in the event of an emergency. We also see this need. However, we felt that these resources could be made visible in a much more subtle way.
When designing the Toyota Material Handling Netherlands building, the aesthetic problem of these resources arose. The fire hose reels would prominently disrupt the interior of the open and dynamic office surface. Moreover, because of the large amount of glass on the office floor, it was difficult to find a place for these resources. Administrative cabinets with sliding doors would be placed on the office floor to shield workplaces from the walking routes. Lensvelt’s metal cabinets, designed by Wiel Arets, have a standard perforation with acoustic material behind it for controlling the sound.
On the office floor we were able to point out a number of cabinets that would be suitable for housing fire hose reel cabinets. The image of a red fire hose reel cabinet on a nice designed administrative cabinet was not the image we were looking for. We have therefore tried to integrate the cabinets into each other. We have adjusted the standard perforation of the box so that the image of a fire hose became visible by perforation. We placed a red lamp near the fire hose and behind the perforation, so that it was clear to all users of the building that in an emergency the fire hose can be found in this cupboard. A larger perforation is made where the fire alarm can be activated. The local fire brigade felt that a special building could also have a special solution for the fire hose reel. The location of these administrative cabinets is fixed in connection with the safety of the building and the connection to the water supply.
Based on these solutions, we have also developed solitary fire hose reel cabinets, with the same principles for every other places in an office building. For example, fire hose reel cabinets are made with white metal perforated fronts, on which a fire hose is visible due to the perforation. These can of course be made in any colour imaginable. Other materials such as wood are also possible. A larger perforation has been made to operate the fire alarm and to open the cabinet. Behind the perforated door is a red lamp which subtly attracts attention at any time of the day.
We have now also found a solution for the mostly ugly fire extinguishers that are hung all over the office floors. We have also made a cabinet for this, in which a fire extinguisher is visible due to the method of perforation. A red lamp has also been installed behind this.
We then designed a cabinet that can accommodate both a fire hose reel and a fire extinguisher. The system can of course generate many other solutions.
In the meantime, these fire hose reel solutions have already been installed in many buildings in the Netherlands and abroad. With this design we hope to have made a nice contribution to the furnishing of buildings.