Innovation in Residential Buildings Post-COVID

August 2021

Developers are planning for new high-rise communities across Canada that incorporate new features in response to the pandemic.  The idea is to provide cleaner and safer indoor space with fewer touch points and facilitate physical distancing.

Building entry, and access to rooms or amenities, may be available through use of a fob or mobile phone.  The same phone can be used to call an elevator and select its destination thus eliminating any need to press buttons or touch surfaces.  The elevator cab may have a HEPA air filtration system to improve air quality and circulation.  Increasingly, fobs will be used throughout a building for access to all spaces.

More are working from a home that lacks the space or privacy to concentrate and be productive.  Working privacy may be provided using enclosed indoor or outdoor weatherproof pods.  Pods, which include glass walls so users can look out, can be located throughout amenities and common areas.

For relaxation sauna “barrels”, located inside or outside, allow for one- or two-person use distanced from others.

In-suite innovations include internet service as a building-wide service instead of each suite obtaining an individual contract with the service of their choice.  The result is service throughout a building at faster speed with unlimited data and fewer dead zones.  Units may have an independent fresh air supply rather than relying on a central system delivering fresh air to all units.  Steam closets, to remove germs on clothes and clean items, can be used when entering the unit or to improve your look during that Zoom meeting.

Developers are likely to continue offering innovations they feel will resonate with condo buyers and residents.