Event attendees experience a New Normal

Amway Center, Orlando

The economic impacts of the COVID-19 global pandemic have compounded the terrible toll of human suffering. Business losses, and the inevitable cost-cutting and travel restrictions associated with them, have had an immediate impact on conference centers, sports arenas, and public venues of all sizes.

Long-planned conferences, concerts, tradeshows, and sporting events have been canceled or postponed. Over 70% of recent tech conferences[1] have shifted to a virtual format and at least 17 have been canceled. The Cancelled Music Events[2] described at Billboard.com include more than 340 tours, festivals, and concerts.

WHAT CAN BE DONE?

The indelible human need for face-to-face exchange and the crammed calendar of postponed events may lead to a surge of activity in 2021. Consider these strategies to prepare a venue now for the new normal. All are available today and many will be essential tomorrow.[3]

Leverage technology
  • Some event attendees must stay-at-home, but for many more, live streaming can enhance their onsite attendance. It may enable multi-track participation or refresh memories back at the workplace.
  • Thermal cameras offer low-cost verification that community health and safety guidelines are being followed.
  • Occupancy can be tallied as people pass through doorways. Realtime digital messages can display current space capacity percentages, recommend areas of less traffic, and post counts of available seating. Those digital signs can also offer periodic reminders of health and safety best practices.
  • Supplementing the ubiquitous hand sanitizer bottles and dispensers, touchless technologies further limit the spread of contaminants.
  • QR codes move meeting collateral, bulletins, and dining menus to smartphone screens.
  • Voice and facial recognition can unlock doors, personalize reminders, or reserve and schedule meetings throughout a facility.
Update contracts

Cancellation clauses are essential. Contracts must be re-worded for clarity in the COVID-19 pandemic and any future health crises. While building operators face lost revenue, event managers risk paying for an unused venue. Those conflicting interests require planning scenarios that would be triggered by a resurgence, a case cluster, or a new health threat.

Expand insurance

Events of all sizes will require cancellation insurance. Leases and booking contracts cannot avert pandemic risks. As facility and event managers seek to boost communicable disease coverage, insurers will be less likely to offer that in a standard form. Some may offer optional extensions. Regardless of format, underwriting is certain to include stringent terms and limitations.

Achieve 3rd party accreditation for emerging pathogen response

Preparing a venue for pandemic threats and being ready to respond to and recover from outbreaks may be the most essential strategies of this new normal. For that effort, a facility can earn internationally recognized accreditation.

Venues of all sizes in more than 64 countries are working toward GBAC STAR™ accreditation.[4] Documented achievement of GBAC’s 20-point cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention program can build public trust and earn the confidence of attendees and employees.

ecoPreserve’s GBAC-Trained Technicians® will collaborate with and train your team as your facility is brought to its best-practice state. Please don’t hesitate to reach out for any further details. Thank you!

Alexa Stone
LEED AP, Sustainable Facility Professional, Envision Sustainability Professional - - Alexa has more than 25 years of experience in sustainable and Smart Cities development. Her strategic planning work has served local, state, and federal government, higher education, and private industry. Alexa founded ecoPreserve in 2009 as a team of 3 and has grown the company to over a dozen of the brightest sustainability and project management professionals in the industry.
Alexa Stone

@ecopreserve

We empower organizations to reduce environmental impact, improve efficiency, and improve quality of life.
https://t.co/DpdVXaSnU6 #RESILIENCY This Workplace Wellness Minute video describes List N of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). - 1 month ago
Alexa Stone

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Here's how to request further information. Thank you for reaching out!

Facility Condition Report

The report is prepared in accordance with the recommendations of ASTM E2018-15, Standard Guide for Property Condition Assessments. This is a partial list of contents:

  • PHYSICAL CONDITION
    • General condition of the building, grounds, and appurtenances
    • Physical deficiencies, their significance, and suggested remedies
    • Photographs
    • Safety issues observed
  • INFECTIOUS DISEASE SPREAD POTENTIAL
  • OPPORTUNITIES
    • Potential operating efficiencies
    • Electricity and water use reductions
    • High-efficiency interior and exterior lighting
  • ORDER OF MAGNITUDE RENOVATION BUDGET
    • Recommended interior finishes
    • Construction costs

Risk Mitigation Improvements

  • IAQ
    • Airflow
    • Temperature and humidity
    • Vertical transportation (escalators and elevators)
  • HVAC EQUIPMENT
    • Settings
    • Conditions
    • Capability
    • Filtration
  • FLOORPLAN
    • Traffic patterns
  • FURNISHINGS
    • Placement for social distancing
    • Clear barriers where social distancing is not possible

Interior Elements

  • Foundation
  • Building frame and roof
  • Structural elements
    • Floors, walls, ceilings
    • Access and egress
    • Vertical transportation (escalators and elevators)
  • HVAC equipment and ductwork
  • Utilities
    • Electrical
    • Plumbing
  • Safety and fire protection

Grounds and Appurtenances

  • Façades or curtainwall
  • Topography
  • Storm water drainage
  • Paving, curbing, and parking
  • Flatwork
  • Landscaping
  • Recreational facilities
Here's how to request further information. Thank you for reaching out!

AWARE of CDC and NIH guidelines

The Baseline Property Condition Assessments described in ASTM E2018-15 do not specify consideration of infectious disease transmission concerns. In a pandemic and post-pandemic environment, that inspection and documentation is essential.

Buildings open to the public must comply with local regulations. For best results and greatest public acceptance, any planning for building repairs and maintenance should not overlook current CDC and NIH guidelines.

Optionally, ecoPreserve's can assist with a comprehensive GBAC STAR™ Accreditation which extends beyond the building to include the goals, actions, equipment, and supplies needed to implement best practices for outbreak prevention, response, and recovery.

An OPTIMIZED Assessment

Certified Sustainability Consultants on a facility assessment team can discover ways to lower energy costs. Their understanding of HVAC equipment suitability and condition along with the specifics of LED lighting retrofits can provide offsets for needed investments in upgrades and replacements.

Knowledge of water systems can bring further savings while averting water waste. It can all be part of an assessment which might otherwise overlook water fixtures and irrigation schedules.

How should a facility be ASSESSED?

A thorough facility assessment finds the issues - on the surface or below - which have a potential negative impact on the building. That brings the facility to meet building codes. Beyond that, the assessment proactively addresses the deficiencies not covered by code.

The occupants of a building benefit as the assessment reveals conditions having a potential impact on their health or safety. The assessment must not overlook those conditions, nor fail to consider the frequency and duration of occupant visits.