Foot traffic flow in today's busy family kitchens can be a challenge. With many people coming and going, doing different activities, and getting in each other's way in the kitchen, how can you reduce conflict and make the kitchen a more comfortable experience for all? Here are a few ways to help everyone by directing traffic where you want it.
1. Create Stations
Kitchen design using stations can help corral excess traffic by directing it to particular locations. A beverage station near the door, for example, might keep everyone out of the kitchen in the morning as they get their coffee or after school when the kids want drinks. Assess your kitchen use to find the right stations and the best place to put those stations for traffic control.
2. Add Barriers
Natural barriers redirect foot traffic organically. One of the easiest natural barriers is a peninsula. The kitchen peninsula forces people to go down certain aisles or sides of the kitchen. If you place your peninsula where pass-through and other traffic is diverted away from the cooking area, everyone will stay out of each other's way. Other simple barriers include walls and half-walls, base cabinets, and appliance placement.
3. Use the Peninsula
Peninsulas are good for more than just diverting traffic paths. They can also serve as landing pads for non-kitchen activities. Some kitchens, for instance, have an in-kitchen island that ends up being a catch-all for homework, cooking, food prep, or clutter. Can a peninsula keep some of these things outside the kitchen entirely? Add a charging station, homework or home office amenities, seating, and organization tools so the family doesn't need to enter the kitchen itself.
4. Keep Things Handy
The kitchen has less traffic congestion if people have to move around less often. This is where good planning and organization tools come in handy. Create landing areas around the major fixtures and appliances so everything stays close. Add dedicated, organized storage for frequently-used tools — things like wrapping supplies, spices, utensils, pots, or measuring tools. And don't forget to utilize the kitchen triangle.
5. Double Up at Times
Have you considered adding a second fixture or appliance to your design? A second sink often serves as a cleanup area, a bar sink, part of a beverage station, or a place for kids to clean up — all without bothering the cook(s). Homeowners should analyze their own kitchen usage to determine if they could benefit from a second microwave, oven, refrigerator, coffee maker, or warmer.
Where to Start
Ready to start implementing better traffic control in your new kitchen? Begin by meeting with a trained kitchen remodeling service in your area today. No matter which of these tips and tricks you take advantage of, the result will be a happier and less chaotic family kitchen.
For more information about kitchen remodeling, contact a local contractor.