May 2020

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COVID-19 Conversations and Implications

These are strange times for all industries and the built environment is no exception.
Marc Petock Marc Petock
Chief Marketing & Communications Officer,
Lynxspring, Inc.

Contributing Editor

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These are strange times for all industries and the built environment is no exception.

COVID-19 has created unprecedented changes. For building owners, integrators, contractors and solution providers, this virus has created new implications not only on the business side, but the operational and environmental side as well.

As, we navigate and consider how to best prepare our facilities for a Ready State to Return, the important question is: What are the changes that will both be needful and/or mandated? How do we begin to answer and have action plans in place to address these changes? While there is no simple/single answer, we must lay the groundwork to deal with what will be permanent changes or the new normal in we how manage and operate buildings. 

So, what are the critical conversations we should be having?

Here are several that I have considered. While I am sure there are additional ones that should be included, (I don’t profess to have them all), this list was born from conversations I have had with a variety of people including: owners, operators, integrators, analysts, technology and solution providers, colleagues and attorneys.

Operational & Environmental Implications 

Business Implications

Buildings have made great strides over the last decade. They operate at better performance levels and in many cases are energy efficient. COVID-19 has both short- and long-term effects that require changes.

Gone are the days it is about energy and efficiency alone. Buildings now need to provide an emotional reassurance that the space is safe. The coronavirus pandemic has emphasized the need for healthy buildings. Better indoor air quality, ventilation systems and increased facility hygiene is now a greater priority. COVID-19 has highlighted the importance of remote access and real-time equipment, device and system analytic and diagnostics capabilities and the monitoring of occupant behaviors or patterns.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]Building automation, integration and remote operations will continue to increase. We are all mindful that this rapidly changing environment is impacting us all and we are doing everything we can to ensure a safe, healthy and efficient built environment. We—the building and facility community—have a vital role to play in reducing the spread of viral illnesses such as COVID-19. Change is hard, but not changing is harder. There is no doubt that this pandemic has forever changed the perspective of our buildings and facilities.

Useful Resources

There are several resources available. Here are five websites you may find of interest on this topic: 

The Healthy Buildings Team at Harvard’s School of Public Health

9 Foundations of a Healthy Building

A Five-Layered Defense for Workplace Reopening


Cushman & Wakefield’s Guide to Reopening Your Workplace


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