COVID-19 Alternate Care Sites: Before You Repurpose Structured Parking for COVID-19 Patients


John Purinton, SE, Principal, Watry Design, Inc.,
Gordon Knowles, Senior Project Manager, Watry Design, Inc.

As health care workers man the front lines of the COVID-19 outbreak, one of the challenges they’re forced to confront is how – and where – to manage the dramatic increase in patient volume. This unprecedented demand for additional beds and space to treat patients has resulted in some hospitals seeking to use vacant parking garage floors as temporary treatment centers. However, if you are considering using structured parking to manage this overflow, there are important safety considerations to be aware of.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand how the structural design loads for parking structures differ from those of occupied spaces such as hospitals, offices and residential buildings, and how that difference impacts adaptive reuse.
  • Learn how the fire and life safety requirements in parking structures are different from occupied spaces.
  • Explore the advantages and safety considerations of adapting the ground floor of a parking structure versus an elevated deck.
  • Learn who to contact to help you evaluate your space.