As the world slowly begins to come out of stringent COVID-19 lockdown measures and places successfully start to flatten their curve and even see the decline of the curve, it’s becoming clearer just how different life will be post-pandemic. Without any sort of treatment or vaccination, the stark reality is that people will be living with the virus for an indefinite amount of time. It is changing the way people work and function in their everyday life with new safety measures popping up all the time.
And it’s not just individuals who are tasked at looking at their lives and figuring out how to effectively use the various measures; it’s also commercial property owners that want to do all they can to ensure they stop the spread and accommodate social distancing guidelines. For now, it’s the social distancing and the existence of space between people that is our most powerful tool against the virus.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at the redesigns and tips commercial property owners can use as they try to accommodate the need for social distancing for the foreseeable future.
The Open Floor Plan is a Thing of the Past
The first thing to come to grips with is the fact that open plan commercial office spaces are a thing of the past. If your commercial properties include office spaces and large office buildings that thrived on an open plan concept, it’s time to see things in a different light. Indoor open spaces where employees are huddled in close with no barriers have been proven to be the perfect breeding ground for the potentially deadly virus.
Sure, it allows a business to pack in as many employees as possible in the square footage, but that can no longer be a priority. It’s time to redesign the space and think in terms of giving people their own bubble if you will. What this could mean is that the office space is only able to accommodate roughly half of the employees it did before, but this is something that employers will be grappling with across the country.
Bring Back the Age of Cubicles
While it seems like the age of cubicles has come and gone, in fact, in the post-pandemic world, they can aid in social distancing. Putting up those “walls” between employees helps to guarantee there is a safe distance between each person. Not only that, but the physical barrier of a wall can also help to prevent face to face the spread of the virus.
When choosing what type of cubicles to use, it’s important to think in terms of sanitation. You want to choose materials that can be sanitized regularly, helping to keep the commercial property as sterile as possible.
Choose Materials that are Durable
The last thing you want to deal with as a commercial property owner is construction and repair crews having to come in and potentially throw social distancing measures out of whack. As North Face Construction, a siding contractor Minneapolis points out, it’s a good idea to take the time to ensure you’ve chosen high quality and durable materials that can hold up to the elements.
North Face Construction comprises of experienced siders and roofers who excel in offering professional service and use the most durable materials out there. It’s all about meeting clients’ needs and ensuring that the outside elements are never a problem.
Create Larger Breakrooms and Meetings Spaces
Because breaks and meetings will continue to take place, there will be a redesign needed in this aspect as well. Perhaps you were used to designating a relatively small space for communal break rooms and conference/meeting rooms. Looking forward, these aren’t going to allow for the adequate social distancing of six feet between each employee. What this means is that you need to redesign and create larger spaces in order to still accommodate the same number of employees.
Some companies may appreciate multiples of each room too, allowing for more people to be engaged in a meeting, or on break at the same time without any fear of overcrowding and infringing on each other’s safety bubble.
Map Out Circles/Squares for People on Elevators
If your commercial property has multiple floors and the use of an elevator is offered, you also need to think ahead in terms of social distancing on an elevator. Creating lines, squares, or circles in the elevator signaling where people can stand will ensure that the elevator isn’t over-packed and that people are too close to one another.
Just the Start of the Measures You Can Take
These are just a few of the redesigns and measures that commercial property owners can take in order to accommodate social distancing, which is here to stay, at least for the foreseeable future.