Managing a High-Rise Building During a Pandemic

By: Kathleen Brenn, ARM

Building Manager, Atrium Palace

RCP Management Company

When news hit that COVID19 was in our town we went into overdrive since we are just across the river from New York and the Management Team had already been watching and talking about what to do if/when it came our way.  Changing sanitizing protocol, staff meetings and guidance, shutting down all amenities and informing residents of the situation.  From that point on it has been a whirlwind of ever changing CDC, NJ Board of Health and local Board of Health guidelines. The inundation of information can be overwhelming at times yet implementation of these guidelines must be put in place ASAP. We became the shoulder to lean on, teachers, information hub, advisors to residents about the ever changing information.

During the beginning we had to rely on our vendors to be kept up to date as to availability of janitorial supplies and masks for our staff and residents and order large quantities just in case so we had sufficient stock.  No one knew how long supplies would last with the high demand. The vendors stepped up to assist. Than the Management team recommended the board meet at least every other day to set building protocol as things were changing daily. Management has been working closely with surrounding buildings for input on what they are doing so we can brainstorm ideas.  The Management team works closely to make everything happen via phone/email/texts since were and still are alternating days in the office to practice social distancing.

Many residents have told us they are very grateful for all the communication we are sending out to keep them informed and the measures that have been taken to minimize the virus.  Then there are those that want to know the amenities will reopen as if nothing has happened.. This has become a fine balancing act to try and keep everyone happy.

This is not going away anytime soon and we will continue to put our best foot forward and make the community a great place to call home.

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