(NC)—While hardwood has long been a popular choice for hard surface floors, sustainable floors like cork are making a huge comeback.
Cork has a long history as the flooring of choice in public buildings like schools, museums, and churches due to its durability and sound-dampening qualities. Industry tests for wear have also shown that it endures better than hardwood, making it a very popular for colleges and libraries.
The McMurrich Building is an historic University of Toronto building which has been recently renovated. For this century-old office and learning facility, proper flooring posed a unique challenge. The flooring had to add beauty, provide sound absorption for large spaces, and also withstand the daily foot traffic of students and employees.
The natural choice was cork. Its look was warm and inviting, and worked in harmony with all the wood veneer finishes. The design team chose an eco-engineered floor from a Canadian company with European cork expertise: Torlys Cork.
“We are very pleased with our flooring choice. Torlys Cork is a beautiful and sustainable product, easy to clean and wears extremely well in this environment,” says Elizabeth Sisam, assistant vice president, University of Toronto Campus and Facilities Planning. “We have now installed cork throughout the entire building, and plan for cork floors in other applications in the university.”
For today's home, you'd be hard pressed to find a floor that can match cork's authentic, enduring strengths. Another big plus is bona fide eco-friendliness. Cork comes from the tree's bark, not from
cut-down trees. A gentle “harvest” approach ensures that the same tree is used only once every nine years.
Cork floors have become a perfect choice for homes. For kitchens in particular, cork's clean, natural beauty combined with comfort and warmth have established it as an elegant choice for the modern home.And here's the real bonus: step on it in bare feet - it won't chill like cold stone. Cork has a delightful feel underfoot, always slightly warm to the touch.