While it remains to be seen how far office spaces will adopt technology that minimises the risk of spreading the coronavirus in the long term, it’s clear that the pandemic has provided fertile ground for the imagination of designers and architects.
One such concept created in reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic is Qworkntine, an air tight pod system, designed by Mohamed Radwan to create a safe working space within a physical work place. The project was initially conceptualised with essential workers who could not work from home in mind.
Winner in the Product Design/Responsible Design category of the DNA Paris Awards 2020, the core of the design is technology which helps reduce the spread of the coronavirus – the pods are made from easy-clean, non-porous materials, while access is handle-less thanks to facial recognition, while the pod also creates a sanitised space including ventilation fans with built-in air purifiers.
However, what’s perhaps more interesting, is that these hexagonal pods can create individual private spaces while still maintaining the same number of employees per square metre as a traditional office layout – creating an opportunity for offering private and quiet spaces as an option within the seating mix of an open-plan workplace.
It can also be customized to fit in 90 degrees angles, and the concept also includes an elongated version, which could offer options for management and executives, or smaller meeting spaces.