The fitwel standard

Fitwel was released in 2017 and has quickly become the leading international wellbeing standard with over 700 certified schemes worldwide. It is administered by the not-for-profit Centre for Active Design (CfAD) in New York and is applicable to commercial and residential property.

Before being turned over to the CfAD for commercial administration, Fitwel was developed by the US Government’s General Services Administration and Centres for Disease Control as a method of benchmarking and improving well-being across the hugely varied government estate portfolio. The requirement was for a standard that could be applied to any property type in any location and in any condition without requiring a massive investment in plant upgrades and refurbishment. No building is precluded from participation.

Fitwel consists of design and operation strategies that address a broad range of health behaviours and risks. These strategies are identified as having the strongest scientific evidence base and greatest impact on health and wellbeing.

Fitwel’s seven health impact categories:

  • Impacts community health
  • Reduces morbidity & absenteeism
  • Supports social equity for vulnerable populations
  • Instils feelings of wellbeing
  • Provides healthy food options
  • Promotes occupant safety
  • Increases physical activity

Fitwel is a points-based system with no preconditions, allowing you to decide where you would like to focus your efforts to improve well-being in each individual property.

Certification may be achieved for:

  • Multi-Tenant Buildings
  • Single-Tenant Buildings
  • Commercial Interiors
  • Multi-Family Residential

In addition Fitwel Campus certification may be achieved where groups of buildings sharing amenities are certified together. An organisation registering 6 or more properties for certification within 12 months may become a Fitwel Champion organisation.

On registration to Fitwel, one year is given to complete certification. Once certification is achieved, it is valid for three years and the project may display a Fitwel wall plaque and use the logo in marketing literature.

Element 4 are certified Fitwel Ambassadors, qualified to guide clients through certification.