The COVID-19 pandemic has completely altered how we live and work and will undoubtedly have lasting implications on all elements of design. As a firm, we have always looked to the future to inform our research, ideas, and solutions and want to assure our clients that they remain in good hands for exactly this reason. Our phased approach to the shifting design landscape focuses on being proactive and intentional in our immediate response while anticipating the architectural and spatial design challenges that lie ahead.
Adapting for Short-Term Solutions
During this period of uncertainty, we are exploring the responsible and cost-effective ways in which we can better adapt projects currently in the design phase. As research around the virus and subsequent health and safety recommendations continue to unfold, our team is keeping abreast of the optimal short-term solutions we can apply to our designs now that will help prepare our clients for the transition to a future post COVID-19.
Planning for Long-Term Implications
Looking further ahead, we will continue to evaluate the new standards of health and wellness and position ourselves to effectively build upon the existing and emerging trends in society and design. Our recent webinar and subsequent blog on The Future of Multifamily Design, centered around the concept of home and how the unprecedented amount of time spent indoors would fundamentally shape our relationship with the residential environment moving forward. We’re currently in the process of developing a similar response for the commercial office and workplace interiors environments, which we will share shortly.
CA Guidelines + Project Management
In the immediate term, we’re working diligently with our partners to ensure projects under construction don’t skip a beat and the design intent is fully realized while doing everything we can to prioritize the safety of our team. Our stance remains that all meetings and observations should continue to be done remotely, with the exception of extenuating circumstances where a physical presence may be required on site. In this case, all present on site must adhere to our baseline safety guidelines and protocol in addition to following the recommendations from other local jurisdictions, the CDC, and OSHA.
Should a project-related COVID case be reported, immediate notification and a detailed summary of events are required from the owner and/or general contractor. We have adopted the rule of three as our general protocol to address such incidents:
Minimum 3 days: A minimum of 72 hours must elapse between someone having been identified as testing positive – as well as those who were in close contact with that person being onsite – and our next visit. This will allow time for thorough cleaning of the space, as well as the identified time for the virus that may have settled on surfaces to die.
Minimum 3 hours: Allow 3 hours to pass between the time tradespeople vacate a space and our visit. This time is to allow for airborne particulates to settle. Ideally our visit will occur after hours or on off days.
Maximum groups of 3: Limit groups to one representative each from the Owner, Arch, and GC. If larger groups are required, subgroups should be limited to 3. This is in effort to maintain social distancing while allowing for effective communication.
If you have immediate questions or needs and would like to speak with one of our experts, please reach out to our Director of Business Development, Laura Roth.