Last updated on 09/03/2021
Product Innovations, BUILDINGS’ annual award program, showcases the most innovative interiors products of the year.
The awards are open to any company exhibiting at NeoCon and evaluated by the BUILDINGS editorial team, which selects finalists based on dependable performance, durable construction, ease of maintenance and what sets them apart from other products.
3 Editor’s Choice, 8 Grand Prize and 16 Merit Award designations were awarded on-site at NeoCon in June 2019.
NeoCon 2019 Trends
We recognized several noteworthy trends on the floor at NeoCon 2019, including these three:
1. Products that do double duty.
It was tough to separate some of the finalists into categories because several of them straddled the lines between product types. One of our Editor’s Choice picks, Luxxbox, is both an LED luminaire and an acoustic treatment. (Pictured: Blade from Luxxbox)
2. An emphasis on flexibility.
Manufacturers have heard the message loud and clear from customers who need to reconfigure spaces with minimal disruption. We found so many clever approaches to reconfiguring space, from the flat cap on Connectrac Flex raceways to the movable flooring options by Mohawk Group and Tarkett.
3. Furnishings that move with the user.
Seating systems that are easy to move allow occupants to create new layouts and customize spaces as their needs change. Even some of the non-furniture contestants embraced movement; BuzziDish, a wall-mounted acoustic panel reminiscent of a satellite dish, pivots easily to deliver acoustic control wherever it’s needed.
27 Innovative Interior Products that Caught Our Interest
These 27 winning products support flexible facilities, require minimal maintenance and empower users to create spaces that fit their needs. Below, you will find the 3 Editor’s Choice winners, our highest distinction, with access to our 8 Grand Prize and 16 Merit Award products.
3 Editor’s Choice Winners
1. Blade Acoustic Light | LUXXBOX
Blade is equipped with high output LED lighting that can replace other task lighting over workstations. It serves a dual purpose as a cost-effective acoustic solution.
Unlike comparable ceiling- or wall-mounted acoustic treatments, both sides of the Blade pendant are exposed, doubling the functional surface area for noise absorption.
(Jason Bird, managing director & creative director, LUXXBOX)
Blade is manufactured from a dense polyester fiber material that includes a minimum of 65% post-consumer recycled content and is 100% recyclable itself. Available in more than a dozen colors, three heights and a range of lengths.
2. Network | J+J Flooring
Network, a textile composite flooring product, contributes to improved acoustics, comfort and traction (compared to a hard surface) to prevent slips and falls and enhance indoor air quality.
(Brandon Kersey, director of business development, J+J Flooring)
It combines the warmth and feel of a soft surface with the extreme durability and maintainability of a hard surface.
Features extreme stain resistance and the ability to withstand 5 million foot traffics with minimal wear—roughly 40 years of steps in a facility with average foot traffic. The lifecycle cost of ownership is less than that of rubber, LVT and VCT.
All Kinetex products, including Network, are NSF 140 Platinum certified and have an EPD and HPD available, as well as a 50% lower environmental impact than traditional flooring. Kinetex products like Network contain more than 55% recycled content and are fully closed-loop recyclable.
3. Hiatus Sleeper Bench | KI
The Hiatus Sleeper Bench is a mobile sleepover solution that accommodates changing needs in the healthcare environment.
Intended for friends and family who are visiting patients, its compact and highly mobile design provides a sleeping solution for very limited space.
(John Mills, VP of KI Canada, KI)
Large, easy-access locking casters allow Hiatus to be moved quickly and effectively by staff members rearranging spaces or relocating the product for housekeeping needs. Supports infection control with an antimicrobial barrier on the mattress and easy mobility for cleaning.
Visual cues demonstrate how to use the product so that healthcare workers don’t spend their limited time helping patients’ families arrange furnishings.
(Photo: Hiatus Sleeper Bench from KI)
Hiatus folds up into comfortable seating when it’s not needed for sleep. This product will undergo LEVEL and SCS Certified Green Indoor Advantage sustainability certification. The steel frame can be recycled and repurposed.
Looking for more innovative products? Check out the rest of our winners: