Hygiene, Hon - Design for Distancing


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Design for Distancing: Reopening Baltimore Together, is a tactical urban design initiative intended to help small businesses reopen without compromising public health. Intrigued by the opportunity to use design to influence hygienic habits through the built environment in a creative way, our team worked collectively to thoughtfully respond to the design challenge. Our goal was to reinforce and provide access to the national health standards by creating a fun and interactive handwashing station, physical distancing guides, and easily installed hands-free door adaptations, to ultimately do our part to safely reactivate public spaces in Baltimore City. The project also aimed to provide urban softscape, accessibility, and enhancements the urban streetscape. Over 160 concept designs were submitted and our team is humbled to have Hygiene, Hon included in the top ten selected concepts to be published in the Guidebook which can be implemented in Baltimore and in cities all over the world. The opportunity to participate in the relevant and imperative design discourse on the impact of the pandemic on the build environment, and also to allow business owners the ability to use our design as a way to adapt to reopening and project a level of care for their community has been a rewarding experience.

  • Hygiene, Hon provides a framework for the re-opening of urban businesses and details several methods to enable and emphasize physical distancing and effective hand hygiene.

    1. Modular handwashing stations are equipped with a water reservoir and foot pedal for hands-free operation. Waste water is filtered and collected as irrigation for adjacent planters. The stations can be installed individually or block-wide, and nest when grouped, creating a network of handwashing stations and physically distanced seating.

    2. Graphics and signage demonstrate appropriate physical distances for queuing and traversing, handwashing techniques, and other recommendations, using colored markers along the sidewalk, building facades, at doors, and at handwashing stations.

    3. Adaptive door hardware allows the public to limit contact with highly-touched surfaces. Small modifications to existing doors allow hands-free operation.

The project aims at reducing disease transmission by utilizing visual and spatial representations of national health recommendations in the public realm.