Story at a glance:
- The D|13 Group has combined a soap dispenser, water faucet, and high-speed dryer into a touchless system to match the most modern designs.
- This single-station soap-water-dryer system works with heavy and light traffic.
- You can find the D|13 Sink System in diverse settings, from a stadium lounge to a business school.
Public washroom sinks have long come with contradiction. You can wash and dry your hands but then have to touch faucets, soap dispensers, or the mechanism for dispensing a towel or activating a dryer in the process—effectively coming into contact with any number of germs.
Fortunately there’s a relatively new all-in-one sink system that offers a completely touchless experience for hand-washers. “The pandemic has changed behaviors,” says John Freitas, general manager of D|13 Group, alluding to how the cleanliness of shared spaces is much more on our minds now than before.
D|13 focuses on designing high-end commercial products for public restrooms that emphasize public safety and hygienic restroom environments. The D|13 Sink System combines the soap dispenser, water faucet, and hand dryer into a single, 30’-wide station so customers can wash and dry their hands in an efficient, left-to-right process in less than 30 seconds.
Excel Dryer’s high-speed, energy-efficient XLERATORsync® hand dryer revolutionized the industry by making it possible for consumers to wash and dry hands as part of one cohesive fixture. This innovative hand-drying solution is a part of the D|13 Sink System. The velocity and concentration of the dryer, positioned over a V-shape sink that diverts airflow into the drain, effectively enables the user to do everything in one clean place.
The D|13 system is already installed in three diverse locations, illustrating a breadth of applications:
Gillette Stadium, Optum Field Lounge, Boston, MA
Located at the football stadium’s south end zone on the field level, New England Patriots fans who pay a premium price to watch games expect a premium experience. This includes clean bathrooms—and clean bathrooms aren’t possible when paper towels clutter floors and overflow waste receptacles. In four bathrooms and 19 user stations, architects from the Populous firm (which specializes in sports stadiums around the globe) selected a stylish D|13 Sink System for the Optum lounge.
It’s all about an upgraded visual experience.
“It’s all about an upgraded visual experience,” Freitas says. “The designers had a very specific design concept, with chrome finishes throughout.” He says selling the system to the client was greatly aided by the fact that XLERATOR® wall-mounted hand dryers are already in use throughout the stadium.
UMass Isenberg School of Management Business Innovation Hub, Amherst, MA
This LEED Gold-certified structure by architects Goody Clancy and the Bjarke Ingles Group has a striking exterior wall of copper-clad fins, making a clear statement that this innovation center is ready for the future.
The same might be said about the 70,000-square-foot building’s 18 sink stations in six bathrooms. Freitas’ team collaborated with the architects to develop a white-on-white design for the facility to meet their vision. The client opted to use a two-fixture system (water and dryer), placing the soap dispenser on the wall. “Throughout we had to meet a very high aesthetic standard,” he says.
The school’s dean predicted at the unveiling in early 2019 that students would “really be blown away by [the restroom sink system] … this doesn’t exist anywhere else on-campus, and I think they’re going to see this as a really interesting and innovative component of this overall incredible building experience.”
Do graduate-level students worry about high-velocity heated air and germ exposure? “We get this question a lot,” Freitas says. “The XLERATOR family of products, both the sink and wall-mounted versions, have a two-part HEPA filtration system. A lot of research was done during the pandemic, and we show how the nozzle directs airflow into the sink and away from the user.”
Bean Restaurant Group/Student Prince, Springfield, MA
The European beer hall aesthetic of the Student Prince is as authentic as a German-themed restaurant in central Massachusetts can get. Founded in 1935, the various additions and series of owners kept the dark woods, stained glass, and beer steins intact, even after more than a dozen locations of Bean Restaurant Group took it over in the past few years.
Even well-established restaurants like the Student Prince need good, clean restrooms to keep their clientele coming back. This resulted in a recent renovation incorporating the D|13 Sink System—one station in each of the two restrooms, providing customers with a hygienic restroom environment to wash and dry their hands while also eliminating the labor for staff of having to clean up littered paper towels. “Form and function with our system is a good blend with this restaurant,” Freitas says.
And what if a customer had more than one stein of the brews on tap—would the sink system be confusing? The D|13 Group design differentiates the soap, water, and XLERATOR dryer with a cylindrical, rectangular, and triangular fixture, respectively. It’s intuitive design.
Form, Function, and Sustainability
Hand dryers from Excel Dryer have been proven by a Life Cycle Assessment to have a lower carbon footprint over conventional hand dryers and paper towel systems (recycled and non-recycled). Furthermore, property managers dedicate far fewer maintenance resources when replacing and disposing of paper towel trash is removed from their checklist by a no-maintenance hand dryer.
Technology like this from D|13 Group continues to make bathroom experiences cleaner and more pleasant. There’s little doubt that the D|13 Sink System is the future of commercial restroom design, especially given its design flexibility. Design teams can customize to choose the counter material, soap dispensers, and faucets that best match their restroom’s overall style. Freitas says this system is the most hygienic, sustainable, and cost-effective way to wash and dry hands on the market today.