Designing the Perfect Waiting Experience

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Waiting AART 5

Photo: Veksø

Enjoy city life while waiting

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Waiting AART 4

Photo: Veksø

Build your perfect waiting environment with Link benches.

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Waiting AART 7

Photo: Kirstine Mengel

Igloo by AART Designers

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Waiting AART 6

Photo: Kirstine Mengel

A small group igloo for working and waiting.

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Waiting AART 1

Photo: Adam Mørk

The surroundings at VUC Syd are perfect for waiting. Nice and cosy.

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Waiting AART 2

Photo: Outsiders

Loop in its natural element

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Waiting AART 3

Photo: Outsiders

Loop is a solid ring, perfect for the scandinavian elements.

Published
07.09.2017

Sit down and wait!
Taking a quick rest while waiting for the bus or at the doctor’s or even just sitting down for a while to enjoy city life is not unusual and most people will experience their own share of waiting time. Luckily, AART designers know a thing or two about how to design the perfect waiting experience for both urban spaces and the public sector.

“Danish designer and architect Verner Panton once said that you are better seated if you are sitting on a colour you like, and I think he’s got a point. It’s about turning the waiting time into an experience by means of colours, shapes and other available effects,” Morten Hove Lasthein says.

As CEO, Partner and Head of Design at AART designers, he has contributed to several seating and waiting areas and he believes that understanding the importance of the user experience and the choice of colour and materials can shed new light on how to create the best possible waiting time experience.

To achieve this, AART designers also consider global trends when developing new designs, and not just in terms of the visual effect, but also the latest digital and technology trends. They do their best to implement these in their new designs, but only when it makes sense!

“We keep up to date with the latest digital developments, which in the long term may be something we’ll use in collaboration with others, but it’s always a question of finding the right balance: Do we create a design incorporating it just for the sake of the technology itself or does it actually add value for the users. For us, it must be the latter case, otherwise there’s no reason to do it,” Morten Hove Lasthein tells.

Understanding the User
High or low, wide or narrow, soft or hard? There are tons of different opinions on how the perfect seating should be designed. Thus, Morten Hove Lasthein makes a habit of listening to the actual users and identifying their needs. Because, after all, design is all about putting people first. It is about putting their needs and desires before form and function, as Morten Hove Lasthein states.

“Every design project is different. For instance, if you’re designing for a hospital, you must acquaint yourself with the situation of the patients,” Morten Hove Lasthein says, and continues with a bunch of relevant questions that should be asked before starting the design process:

“What are the users’ wishes for the seating? Would they like an area where they can sit and wait alone? Do they need covering so they can talk to their relatives in privacy without getting disturbed? Are you designing for senior citizens or is your target group children? You should take the user’s needs as your starting point,” the designer explains.

At a hospital, the user’s needs are put before anything else, contrary to in an urban space where the designs are used by a motley collection of people. Thus urban designs are often more generic and they are characterized by the specific surrounding atmosphere of the city – typically, they take shape at the intersection between design and architecture.

“For urban spaces and outdoor areas, the designs should express the function while interacting with the surrounding and enriching the experience of the urban space – both for those who take a rest and for those who walk by. Here, it’s a more than just a practical question of providing the opportunity to take a short break; it is also about giving something back to the city, ” Morten Hove Lasthein ends.

Companies mentioned in this article