- 2021 HONOREE
A Toolkit for the Times – Lemonade Award Winner
The Lemonade Statement
When in March of 2020, Bay Area officials became the first in the country to institute a stay- at- home order in response to COVID- 19, we quickly put together a team of researchers, designers and communicators to assess the pandemic’s impact on work environments and devise a strategy for moving forward.
At 170 pages, “A Toolkit for the Times” is a comprehensive analysis of how work environments must change to meet the challenges of a pre- vaccine economy. It includes both guidelines for office design and for protocols to make the workplace safer. Our research team spoke to ER doctors, epidemiologists, architects, psychologists, sociologists, furniture and systems manufacturers and experts in fields as wide- ranging as air filtration and elevator design. Sifting through a welter of evolving and often contradictory information, the design team created annotated space plans for every aspect of a multi- space environment.
The Toolkit begins in the parking lot and proceeds through the lobby to offices and space typologies of every stripe. With guidelines for landlords and tenants alike, it addresses technical design issues—placement of workstations, meeting room alterations, kitchen design, etc.—as well as routine behaviors likely to become the new normal. Will we change our shoes entering the office? Probably. Will we wear our masks full time? Definitely.
Typically, we have not been content to assemble a purely technical guide. Drawing on its long- held belief that every environment is an experience, the company has shaped its Toolkit to address what the reality of working in these spaces will be. For a post- pandemic workplace to be successful it will not only have to be safe, but feel safe to the people who occupy it. O+A’s Toolkit imagines what a first day back might feel like, looks at the psychology of environmental design and accompanies each space category with real- world suggestions for making it work.
Sumptuously illustrated by O+A’s graphic design team, the Toolkit includes an artful gallery of public health posters —Chin Up (But Keep It Covered)—and witty visualiz ations of our brave new workplace. Because the pandemic story is ever- changing, the Toolkit will be an organic document, updated regularly with new research findings and product information. A Volume II Toolkit assessing the long- term impact of the crisis and what work will be when the pandemic is behind us is presently underway in O+A’s scattered (though surprisingly productive) work- from- home