FMLink Weekly News Digest I December 19, 2022
The AHR Expo has released its 2023 Trend Report covering the current state of the heating, ventilation, air-conditioning and refrigeration (HVACR) industry and outlook for 2023. The researchers created the HVACR trends report to provide a thoughtful connection point for its audiences with the goal of identifying the state of the industry ahead of the show in Atlanta February 6-8, 2023.

The robust 2023 Trend Report was compiled with information from HVACR industry associations, as well as a sampling of manufacturers and those working in the field. Respondents were asked a series of questions based on the current state of the industry and discussions happening in their specific areas of expertise, as well as opportunities, threats and market predictions heading into 2023.

Global building technology society ASHRAE’s Board of Directors recently announced its commitment to support the expedited development of a national indoor air quality (IAQ) pathogen mitigation standard. The goal is to finalize the consensus-based, code enforceable standard within six months.

"The health and well-being of building occupants are crucial factors that must be considered during the design, construction and operation phases of the building process," said 2022-23 ASHRAE President Farooq Mehboob, Fellow Life Member ASHRAE. "ASHRAE’s long history of leadership in IAQ science and technology will provide broad-reaching guidance through this standard to help ensure the use of best practices for pathogen mitigation, which will assist in creating safer indoor spaces for us all."

by John Massey, CEO, PropertyTRAK.— A nonprofit healthcare organization that provides a continuum of family health support maintains high standards for its corporate image and facilities stretching all the way to its restrooms. Committing to its quality mission, Compass Health Network (CHN) developed a unique QR Code application that amplifies its ability to maintain public areas. Implementing the computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) is leading to equipment and process changes that are enhancing its corporate image, improving guest satisfaction and financially benefiting the corporation.

CHN offers primary, dental and behavioral health and substance abuse services in 100 facilities and properties across Missouri with 390 rest rooms to be serviced, supplied, sanitized and maintained. Recurring Work Orders are in use to ensure that scheduled janitorial services and inspections periodically restore public areas to corporate standards. Between scheduled services for each restroom, there was no formal way to learn if maintenance was needed. 

The key concerns were to:  
  1. Identify specific equipment and assets to include in budgets for replacement or enhancement to help reduce staff time and operational costs.
  2. Identify potential changes to service frequency and staff procedures that will cost-effectively improve the image of high-traffic public areas presented to clients and guests.  

According to a Leger survey of workers in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) conducted on behalf of the BreatheEasy safe indoor air consortium, 70% are concerned about catching a respiratory virus at work. Of the spaces where people feel the most uncomfortable due to the risk of virus transmission, public transit (55%) and gyms (48%) topped the list, followed by medical offices (33%), restaurants (32%), office spaces (26%), and retail stores (25%). With 90% of those surveyed understanding the critical role that ventilation plays in preventing respiratory infections, two-thirds (66%) said they would spend more time in a building where they had access to air safety data. However, only 60% noted that their workplace has communicated air safety protocols and best practices to keep staff safe.

BreatheEasy conducted what it calls the world’s first citywide program to test indoor air safety in public spaces where people work, shop, and gather in the downtown Toronto core to evaluate the risk of contracting an airborne illness such as colds, flu, RSV, or Covid-19. The BreatheEasy initiative measures how efficiently a space clears airborne viruses and bacteria using a 20-minute Rapid Air Safety Test that uses a patented tracer-sensor system developed by Poppy Health, a San Francisco and Toronto-based indoor health data company.

Landscape Forms, a leading North American designer and manufacturer of high-design site furniture, structure, LED lighting, and accessories, joins long-time partner Santa & Cole Urbidermis to introduce Gunnar, an adaptable architectural floodlight system that enhances outdoor environments with precise, context-specific illumination and cohesive, minimalist aesthetics.

Landscape Forms Senior Designer Brian Revoir stated: The power of Gunnar is the framework it creates to make it your own. The system builds out from one simple and elegant luminaire a range of mounting styles and applications to specifically suit your environment and your aesthetic.

Designed by master multidisciplinary artist Antoni Roselló, Gunnar is inspired by the work of Swedish architect and key representative of Nordic Classicism Gunnar Asplund. Celebrating Asplund’s compelling reinterpretation of classical architectural orders, Gunnar’s aesthetic touches on both the traditional and the contemporary to complement a variety of architectural styles.

To work outside of home or to work from home? Summer 2022 survey shows only 1 in 5 office workers admit amenities are what brings them back to the office.

Office workers find technology and flexible workstations a more significant factor in getting them back to the office than amenities, reveals research from software and technology company essensys.

According to the essensys-commissioned survey among 1,000 U.S. office workers, critical findings show that while only 1 in 5 office workers admit that amenities bring them back to the office, the vast majority (63%) of office workers claim technology and flexible workspaces are the reason they come to the office, proving the importance of a tech-forward workplace.

SGA, a national, multidisciplinary firm whose work spans architecture, interior design and master planning for life sciences, academic, mixed-use and commercial clients, recently announced that Boston’s first purpose-built life sciences development, designed by the firm, has broken ground. Representatives from co-developers Lendlease and Ivanhoé Cambridge joined elected officials and project partners at the ceremonial groundbreaking for the development, which will deliver in 2024.

Known as FORUM, the $500 million life sciences development is located at 60 Guest St. in Boston. Upon completion, the nine-story, 350,000-square-foot life science building will rise on one of the last available sites in Boston Landing, a 15-acre mixed-use community along the Massachusetts Pike in Boston’s Allston-Brighton neighborhood. The leasing agent for the building is JLL.

Allergy Standards Limited (ASL), an independent global certification company, and the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA), a leading patient organization for people with asthma and allergies, have deemed Tarkett Powerbond RS resilient flooring as Certified Asthma & Allergy Friendly — the world’s first soft surface flooring to receive this designation.

"Powerbond was introduced in 1967 and, decades later, is still ahead of its time," stated Roxane Spears, vice president, Sustainability, for Tarkett North America. "Health and well-being are important topics for our customers. Powerbond RS was specifically developed to address potential problems associated with indoor air quality and building-related illness. This type of third-party certification gives validity to the innovative work Tarkett has done to create healthy, sustainable products."

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