Sunlight is already a primary consideration in green building, but utilizing the sun does more than enable solar energy and reduce electricity use, it improves the social sustainability of spaces as well.
The offices of Google and the General Services Administration are among many that have proven exposure to sunlight can increase employee productivity. At Google, placing employees near windows improves their relationship to the work environment and inspires creativity. Terrapin Bright Green, a design firm, was able to increase the productivity of a call center by about six percent solely by moving desks closer to windows.
Technology to maximize the benefits of daylighting is not far behind. SunCentral, a Canadian company, has developed the SunBeamer, which optimizes natural light to bring it hundreds of feet into the center of big spaces. The technology has already been employed in commercial buildings such as a mall in Arcadia, California to create a naturally lit arena capable of fostering tree growth without altering the outside of the building and possibly decreasing insulation efficiency.
In addition to retrofitting spaces to increase daylighting, architects are making considerations from the very beginning of design, finding ways to bring the outside in and work stress down.
Read more about the companies illustrating the benefits of daylighting from Forbes.