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Rachel Bevan Architects were commissioned to create the nursery unit at Cedar Integrated Primary School. The aim was to create a safe, pleasant, non-toxic school environment. The project team sought advice from the Green Building Store.


To achieve good levels of internal air quality, specification of natural materials was sought as much as possible: 

  • to avoid off-gassing of health damaging substances which naturally occur with synthetic paints, natural paints were specified for internal walls, internal ceilings and external fascias and plinths
  • natural paints were also specified for wood finishes for internal and external doors
  • natural rubber flooring materials were also specified, to avoid off-gassing and environmental concerns associated with vinyl

The natural paints and finishes were slightly more expensive than conventional products; however they represented a small fraction of the total building contract.

The painting contractor had no problems with coverage, ease of application or mixing in the liquid mineral pigment colouriser, although drying times for natural paints were sometimes longer than those compared to conventional products.

This approach could be easily adopted for any scale of project, in all industry sectors.

Project team

Green Building Store

Rachel Bevan Architects

Further information