work triangle is the distance between the refrigerator, the stove and the sink
. These three lengths
are the most important paths for preparation, cooking and clean up in the kitchen. Determining the distance between these
points is an important part to consider when doing a kitchen remodel. If the distances are too close together the kitchen
will feel like a cramped space that is hard to work in. If these areas are too far apart all important kitchen tasks will
be strenuous and inefficient.
There are four basic types of kitchen set ups that can be adjusted to accommodate a proper kitchen work triangle.
We have listed these designs below in order to help with your remodeling project.
The U-Shaped kitchen is enclosed on three sides. The sides are made up of counter space and cupboards. The
counter space is ideal for preparation and the cupboards allow for additional storage space. Downfalls of this space
include difficult access to cupboards near the stove and if the space is not large enough there will not be enough room
for an island in the middle.
The corridor or galley design when set up properly limits the distance between the
and range. This allows for easy and efficient movement throughout the work triangle. The downside is
limited counter space and the inability to have more than one cook in the kitchen at a time.
The peninsula design opens up the space to the dining room, but is limited to a very small
work triangle which can lead to a crowded feeling. Bar stools can be added to the peninsula to connect the common space to
the dinning area for extra seating.
The L-Shaped kitchen has become a popular kitchen design due in part to the functionality of the kitchen
work triangle. In this design the work triangle is virtually uninterrupted by traffic. This design is easily manipulated;
the leg of the “L” can easily be extended to create additional counter space and storage. If the kitchen is large, one
side of the triangle may be longer than anticipated.
When designing the kitchen work triangle in your own kitchen, it is important to remember that no side of the triangle
should be shorter than four feet or longer than nine feet, and the overall perimeter of the triangle should be no larger
than a total of 26 feet. It is easy to forget to plan how the refrigerator and oven doors open up in to the triangle; try
to take this into consideration so that when these appliances are opened the triangle is not being constricted in any way.