The coronavirus pandemic has changed a lot of things in our lives and with few, we are still adapting. We are welcoming changes like social distancing, home office, online education, and so on. While we are trying to adapt to the new normal, our country's infrastructure might go through major changes as well.
The pandemic can leave some permanent changes in structural design. Here are a few visions which we might have to welcome and cope well with, in the near future.
As we are spending most of our time indoors, buildings will be the centre of attention in this changing wave. High-rise buildings used to be the priority for placing many people under one shed, however, now, health and wellbeing will be prioritised.
The value of air, light, enough open spaces is being redefined. Therefore, in the post-pandemic society, designs – big windows, cross ventilation process, a balcony or terrace will be the new requirements. A corner for home office might take away the favourite cosy space too.
Moreover, a vestibule might also be introduced at apartments or community buildings for safety purposes.
Remote offices or home offices might be the new normal scenario in a post-Covid-19 city. In that case, there will be less demand for renting out permanent office spaces. Entrepreneurs or new businesses might favour renting shared office spaces.
Meanwhile, entities that require a physical office would need to expand the workspace to ensure safety regulations. The design of elevators needs to be rethought as well.
Restaurants should install disinfecting tunnels at doorways. To reduce the risks of contamination, the entire restaurant must be disinfected after every sitting. Kitchens should imply a make-up air unit to maintain proper airflow and keep the employees safe.
Many schools, colleges, and universities have introduced online classes and others should do the same. Distribution of institutions would help to ensure qualitative education and it might bring a change in the city's culture mentality too. Going online will reduce traffic congestions as well.
Industrial factories which occupy vast spaces in cities can migrate. In this way, the workers will have to shift too. Structured houses can be offered to accommodate this huge number of workers. The houses can be easily built with lightweight and low-cost materials.
Different NGOs, governments, or factories can take this initiative to help the workers. Government and policymakers can imply this plan for slum dwellers too. This same idea can be implied while designing slums.
After the pandemic, walking and cycling would be more comfortable than using public transport. Therefore, dependency on private transport needs to be lessened.
Some residents have already started this practice. To make their life easier, wide footpaths and bicycle lanes should be constructed as soon as possible.
Hospitals need to be designed at a place that provides both, mental and physical treatment to the patients. Hence, it would welcome more functions than ever, for social wellbeing.
Green view, relaxing space, changing rooms, locked gates, more restrooms, a bigger canteen with quality food for physicians and doctors should be included in hospitals.
Social distancing experiments can be carried out the most in public places as there is always high activity in such areas. Benches can be replaced by stools installed in distant places.
Moreover, buffer zones can be introduced at railways, parks, or airports. It would help to keep the city and its dwellers healthy.
After decentralization or distribution, more public places and playgrounds can be introduced, in cities.