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Arizona Law "New Safe Return" Plan: 8.0 PHYSICAL PLANT

Guidelines for the College of Law's new safe return to campus

8.0 PHYSICAL PLANT

In accordance with UArizona guidelines, this Plan establishes the following protocols for operation of the Arizona Law physical plant. These protocols aim to protect members of the Arizona Law community from infection and to limit the survival of the COVID-19 virus in our environment. A coordinated and cooperative effort between Arizona Law students, faculty, and staff, as well as outside parties, is essential to limit the spread of the virus.

The University of Arizona’s Returning to Workspaces website includes helpful guidance for employees who are returning to campus. There is information on how to navigate and prepare Office Spaces, Public & Common Areas, and Elevators & Stairs.

Office Spaces

The most important prevention methods in office spaces are to maintain physical distance, wear a face covering, wash your hands, and disinfect common surfaces regularly.

Supervisors in office settings should:

  • Use the “UArizona COVID-19 Workplace Prevention Checklist” to plan your office’s safe return.
  • Work with employees to create work from home strategies, staggered schedules, and other ways to minimize the density of people physically present at work to maintain physical distancing.
  • Encourage and support all employees to stay home if they are sick, have been in close contact (within 6 ft for 15 minutes or longer) with a COVID-19 positive case, or if they have tested positive themselves.
  • Ensure all employees have face coverings and are aware of CDC guidance and UArizona’s Administrative Directive on the use of face coverings.
  • Ensure disinfectants are made available to all employees; including hand sanitizer, hand soap, disinfectant solution for common surfaces, etc.
  • Check in with employees to determine if they have questions, concerns, and are informed about all available resources (such as mental health and well-being, campus pantry, etc.).

Employees in office settings should:

  • Maintain at least 2 face coverings and wear them in accordance with UArizona guidance and CDC best practices.
  • Stay home, seek healthcare, and inform your supervisor if you begin exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, have a confirmed positive COVID-19 test, or have been in close contact with a confirmed positive COVID-19 case.
  • Clean and disinfect workspaces and equipment daily or more frequently.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes as much as possible.
  • Follow all instructions and signage regarding COVID-19 prevention measures.

Public & Common Areas

Public and common areas are the places where COVID-19 is most likely to spread. Physical distancing is the most important means of controlling the spread of COVID-19 in these locations.

Supervisors should ensure:

  • Cleaning and disinfection of all public and common surfaces should be performed before and after each use or at least daily using an EPA-approved disinfectant.
  • Physical distancing and elevated hygiene measures (proper hand hygiene) is being practiced and encouraged.
  • Remove and alter these spaces to minimize common touchpoints. Changes to the workplace itself can only be done by Facilities Management. Do NOT attempt to alter any location yourself; contact at (520) 621-3000.

Common Areas

  • All employees should review and adhere to the best practices below for common public settings

Bathrooms

  • Face coverings should always be worn in bathrooms.
  • Maintain physical distance when waiting to use the bathroom; wait outside of the bathroom if possible.
  • Stand as far away from the toilet as possible when flushing and use your foot to flush if and when possible/feasible. If a toilet seat cover/lid is available, close the lid prior to flushing.
  • Use a paper towel to open the door and minimize contact with common surfaces.

Break Rooms and Kitchens

  • Face coverings should always be worn in breakrooms and kitchens.
  • All surfaces should be wiped down before and after each use, with an EPA-approved disinfectant.
  • Avoid sharing any common items (e.g. coffee makers, coffee mugs, plates, utensils) and snacks. Employee should bring their own and keep at their desk to prevent possible transmission.
  • Remove chairs and tables to discourage congregation in break areas and kitchens.

Doors and Door Handles

  • Remove non-essential doors, only with the help of Facilities Management and approval of Risk Management Services (it may be a fire door or other important item that cannot be altered).
  • Use a paper towel to open the door and minimize contact with common surfaces.
  • Install foot pulls as an additional handle option where feasible, only with the help of Facilities Management.

Shared Equipment (chairs, keyboards, printers, copiers, office supplies)

  • Try to reduce the amount of sharing that must occur, by providing individual office supplies, keyboards, etc.
  • Leave equipment and light switches “on” all day to reduce common touchpoints.
  • Supervisors and employees should remove unnecessary fabric upholstered chairs, and replace with easy to disinfect, non-porous material chairs, when practicable.
  • Supervisors should place disinfecting supplies directly next to all shared equipment and encourage employees to clean before and after each use.
  • Supervisors should secure supplies storage and designate specific personnel to manage stock and distribute items.

Elevators & Stairs

Elevators

The best way to use an elevator is alone; elevators should always be used with as few people as possible.

  • Face coverings should always be worn in elevators.
  • Take the stairs if you are able and reserve the elevators for those who cannot.
  • Appropriate physical distancing of at least 6 ft should be maintained; if you cannot keep that distance, try to wait for the next elevator or take the stairs.
  • Use a tissue, glove, or other disposable item to push buttons when possible. Wash hands as soon as possible after exiting the elevator.

Stairs

Stairwells and narrow staircases should move in a single direction. Many building managers have designated sets of stairs as either “Up” or “Down” only.

  • Face coverings should always be worn in stairwells.
  • Look before you enter the stairwell and follow building signage.
  • Avoid touching stair rails unless necessary.
  • If the stairs go both ways, try to stay as close to one side as possible and do not linger in the stairwell.

Practice Good Hygiene

After using an elevator or the stairs, all employees should avoid touching hands to face, eyes, and mouth and practice proper hand hygiene by either washing their hands thoroughly (soap and water for 20 seconds) or using hand sanitizer.

To assess the best mitigation strategies across the multiple buildings of Arizona Law, the Arizona Law campus was divided into seven different physical/functional zones and each examined separately. The table below outlines all the mitigation measures required by this Plan and treats Arizona Law as one unit (excepting the library, which is discussed in section 10 below). More detailed implementation plans for each zone are available upon request.

Some of the practices listed below will be performed by the College of Law’s building management team and some by UArizona’s facilities management (FM) team. These two groups already work in close coordination and the collaboration will continue under this new plan.

MILESTONES: Enhanced sanitization methods are underway; furniture changes and office modifications will be made and signage posted by August 1, 2020; controlled access and reduced touchpoints will be in place by August 10, 2020.

 

Mitigation Strategy

How will it be implemented? 

[FM = Facilities Management planning to perform]

Locations/Notes

Safe Distancing (minimum 6’)

 

  • Make every effort to create office spaces with 144 feet per employee
  • Hold all meetings via online platforms unless the meeting’s content will be compromised by doing so
  • Place signage in or remove chairs from classrooms, lounges, and meeting spaces to achieve 6’ distancing
  • Create alternative meeting space for large in-person meetings (e.g. move to lobbies)
  • Remove/reconfigure seating in lounges, common areas, offices
  • Limit capacity in elevators, at picnic tables, in restrooms
  • Control traffic flow: in heavily trafficked areas, make traffic one-way where feasible
  • Control traffic flow: where classrooms have two doors, use one door for ingress and one for egress 
  • Use signage to reinforce:
    • 6’ distancing
    • Mask wearing required
    • New traffic flows within the buildings
    • New room/space capacities

Classrooms, common areas, conference rooms, journal offices, courtyard.

 

Signage at points of entry, common areas, classrooms, hallways, stairs, elevators, courtyard, restrooms

Sanitize and Disinfect 

  • Install wall-mounted hand sanitizers at classroom and building entrances [FM]
  • Situate sanitization stations throughout Arizona Law buildings for easy sanitization of work areas before and after contact
  • When feasible, supplement the custodial crew’s daily sanitization of classrooms with a second disinfection mid-day, using a misting device if possible 
  • Disinfect upholstered lounge furniture daily [FM]
  • Increase cleaning and disinfection of high touch points such as elevator buttons, door handles, light switches [FM]
  • At weekly or biweekly intervals, disinfect classrooms, upholstered furniture, and high touch points with continuously active surface disinfectant developed by UArizona if available
  • Provide designated (clear if possible) refuse cans for disposal of face coverings and gloves
  • Improve air quality and change filters frequently [FM]
  • Use signs to remind and educate
    • wash hands properly
    • sanitize work areas before and after use

Classrooms, common areas, conference rooms, lobbies, points of entry, kitchens, journal offices, student workrooms.

Reduce Touch Points

  • Install touchless fixtures (e.g. toilets, faucets, foot operated doors, paper towels) in restrooms [FM]
  • Install autofill water bottle water fountains and/or motion activated water fountains [FM]
  • Encourage use of a touch tool or tissue for high-touch items such as doors, water fountains, vending machines, sinks, refrigerators, cabinets
  • Remove brochures and literature in common areas
  • Regarding doors, where possible: post open interior doors; use knee to depress blue button to open automatic doors; use back to depress crash bars; use a touch tool in other instances

Restrooms, kitchens, hallways, common areas, doors

Signage at high-touch items

Physical Barriers/face protection

  • Install polycarbonate shields at workspaces with frequent face-to-face interaction [FM]
  • Install partitions in shared office spaces
  • Repurpose spaces (e.g., move clinics’ open reception into room with a door)
  • Require all persons to wear face masks in all public areas

High-traffic offices and places where 6’ distancing is not possible; other public areas

Control Access

  • Require daily screening and temperature check for entry into Arizona Law buildings
  • Install a screening tablet and temperature monitoring system at a kiosk set up for this purpose;
  • In the main building, only the courtyard entrance doors will work. The Speedway entrance and the loading dock entrance will be locked. 
    • Anyone can leave the premises using any exit doors.
    • Emergency personnel have override access via UAPD, who is first on the scene in any emergency per UArizona policy. They can enter through any door.
  • Work with Amer-Ex to keep classrooms locked until needed
  • Keep conference rooms locked until needed
  • Where visitors are seen, terminate walk-in services and require appointments instead
  • Lock supply closets
  • Post signs at designated east and west courtyard entry points indicating that campus is open only to Arizona Law faculty, staff, and students.
    • These signs should include a telephone number for authorized visitors to call to obtain entry and information about our screening and temperature checks 
  • Post signs at all building entrances reminding people to complete screening and temperature check
  • Post signs reminding people not to enter if they have symptoms or have had close contact with someone who does

Designated areas/designated personnel provide access

Monitor

  • Request additional face coverings, gloves, disinfectant, hand sanitizer, and other anti-virus materials as needed.
  • Wipe down defined areas biweekly in surveillance of potential hot spots* 

Refills as requested and/or observed

*Per instructions of the testing team.