Monthly Archives: June 2020
Wolf Commercial Real Estate (WCRE) is pleased to announce that it has been appointed exclusive agent to market for lease a proposed 128,000 SF medical office building in the Port Richmond neighborhood of Philadelphia located at 2201 East Allegheny Avenue.
This new listing opportunity adds to WCRE’s growing number of assignments of speculative medical and healthcare space in the greater Philadelphia market.
The proposed development will consist of 2 buildings with a total of 128,000 square feet on an approximate 7 acre site bounded by E Allegheny Ave, E Westmoreland Street, and Tulip Street. The site is directly adjacent to Temple University Health System, along with numerous other medical providers located at Commonwealth Campus.
The primary building at 2201 E Allegheny will feature 5-stories with roughly 24,000 SF floor plates along with an 8,400 SF single story building that can accommodate retail or in-line medical users. The site will continue to accommodate a large parking capability while being less than a half mile from Allegheny Station along the Market-Frankford Line for accessibility.
BG Capital LLC is a commercial real estate-based investment and development firm founded in 2015 that primarily focuses in the Tristate Area. Headquartered in Philadelphia, BG Capital specializes in mixed-use, medical office and industrial assets by relying on market expertise and analytics to strategically invest in these growing sectors of real estate.
Tyler Huffman, Senior Associate at BG Capital said,
“We are excited to partner with the team at WCRE to market this extraordinarily rare build-to-suit medical office opportunity in the rapidly developing Port Richmond neighborhood of Philadelphia. WCRE’s team of experienced real estate professionals and their vast network of leading healthcare providers make this a perfect match for identifying the right healthcare user to continue to grow our campus with.”
WCRE’s Philadelphia specialist team of Chris Henderson and Mitch Russell said,
“BG Capital is an elite investment & development firm in Northeast Philadelphia with an impressive resume over the past 5 years. We are proud to be representing BG for this proposed site that would bring another large healthcare provider to a booming Port Richmond neighborhood.”
WCRE is a full-service commercial real estate brokerage and advisory firm specializing in office, retail, medical, industrial and investment properties in Southern New Jersey and the Philadelphia region. We provide a complete range of real estate services to commercial property owners, companies, banks, commercial loan servicers, and investors seeking the highest quality of service, proven expertise, and a total commitment to client-focused relationships. Through our intensive focus on our clients’ business goals, our commitment to the community, and our highly personal approach to client service, WCRE is creating a new culture and a higher standard. We go well beyond helping with property transactions and serve as a strategic partner invested in your long-term growth and success.
Learn more about WCRE at www.wolfcre.com, on Twitter & Instagram @WCRE1, and on Facebook at Wolf Commercial Real Estate, LLC. Visit our blog pages at www.southjerseyofficespace.com, www.southjerseyindustrialspace.com, www.southjerseymedicalspace.com, www.southjerseyretailspace.com,
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The resumption of indoor dining has been put on hold by Gov. Phil Murphy, he announced June 29 at his daily COVID-19 briefing in Trenton. It will no longer resume on July 2, as planned last week.
Murphy cited increasing numbers of cases in other states where indoor dining was allowed to begin. “Given the current situation in numerous other states, we do not believe it is prudent at this time to push forward with what is in effect a sedentary indoor activity, especially when we know this virus moves differently indoors than out, making it even more deadly,” the governor said. No new date has been set for restaurants to welcome customers back inside.
Mayor Jim Kenney and Philadelphia health officials said Friday the city has not yet met its targets for moving to the green phase of reopening.
The city’s targets for reopening are to have fewer than 80 positive cases per day or a percent-positive case rate of less than 4%.
Let’s look at architectural design considerations for a post pandemic world. Are you tired of hearing about the “New Normal”? Do you yearn for the “Old Normal”, or fear that life as we knew it has changed forever? These are legitimate thoughts as we navigate through and beyond this pandemic. The good news is that we are natural survivors, with a long history of staring-down adversity and rising above with resolve, courage, and grace. Even in such extraordinary times, we overcome fear, fight through pain and loss, heal ourselves and our world, and eventually move forward as well or better than when the crisis first began.
Another common saying at times like these is “this too shall pass”. We at Jarmel Kizel Architects and Engineers, Inc. agree, however, it is incumbent upon all of us to first deal with the situation in a safe and vigilant manner, and to do what we can to prevent this from happening again. The reality is, we live in a world of expanding population growth, urban swell, suburban sprawl and frequent international travel, all factors that facilitate the spread of a deadly virus such as COVID-19. Like many of our colleagues throughout the architecture, engineering and planning community, the team at Jarmel Kizel Architects and Engineers, Inc. has been considering strategies that protect our health while helping restore and preserve as many characteristics of the “Old Normal” as
possible. The firm recently conducted a round table video call to discuss how we as design professionals can address the behavioral, physical and technological changes needed to keep our society safe, prevent further spread, and help expedite return to “normalcy”. The topics discussed in this paper are the results of our collective thoughts on this matter, and would be delighted to expand upon them in greater and more technical detail based upon our client’s needs.
Jarmel Kizel Architects and Engineers is active in several industry sectors, but the three most prominent are residential, office/commercial interiors, and education/childcare; all indisputably linked to lifestyles of our fellow Americans. We’re engaged daily in designing buildings and spaces where people live, work, shop, and educate their children. In the context of these specific sectors, this article will explore the behavioral or “humanistic” side of how to better plan for and help prevent similar challenges in the future, and explore the physical and technical considerations that could be implemented to fight and defeat this crisis.
Workplace Design Considerations for a Post Pandemic World
Whether you work in an urban high-rise, suburban office suite, or in a retail location, changes will be obvious as soon as we all return. Office tower workers and visitors will endure delays at security/reception checkpoints and can expect lengthy lines waiting for an elevator. All who work in offices will be required to follow safety guidelines such as social distancing, wearing protective face masks, and submitting to health screening upon entering. Employers will be forced to weigh productivity and efficiency factors against employee safety and wellness.
Many companies have already considered (or are implementing already) the following policies and procedures:
• Adding hand wash and disinfecting stations
• Modifying office, conference room, and workstation configurations to assure adequate distance between staff members
• Placing shields and barriers between workstations
• Limiting use of office pantries and kitchens
• Implementing staggered shifts, 4-day work weeks, and permitting/encouraging work-from-home Encouraging remote videoconferencing in lieu of face-to-face meetings
• Limiting business travel to the best extent possible
• Temperature check / overall health assessment screening at entry
These, and many other operational and “behavioral” safeguards have been discussed via news outlets and various blogs and webinars, and are mostly common-sense. Additionally, workers can be safe-guarded by implementation of technology, much of which is already available:
• Hands-free operational entry doors
• Facial recognition technology
• Clear graphic signage for directions, wayfinding, room capacity, etc.
• Occupancy sensors in office and common spaces
• Voice-activated elevator call commands
• Hands free toilet/urinal flush and touchless lavatory faucet control
• Introducing more outdoor air intake for ventilation systems
• Ultraviolet / germicidal lighting for cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces
• Ultraviolet / germicidal devices in HVAC systems and distribution ductwork
• Use of antiviral surfaces and coatings
Overall design standards for offices can and should be altered to create a higher “area-per-workstation” ratio, and work-benching, hoteling, and shared computer spaces should be greatly reduced or eliminated. Office environments in firms such as ours, where collaboration and cooperation among various disciplines is imperative, must utilize more and more the technology that already exists to share information, share documents, share screens, etc.
Residential Design Considerations for a Post Pandemic World
Jarmel Kizel has designed countless multi-family residential projects over its history. We recognize that many reading this paper are more accustomed to single-family home living but certain considerations run consistent regardless of lifestyle. Also, many reading this have some involvement in multi-family residential through business (developers, investors, designers, leasing agents, property managers, etc.). Multi-family residential buildings, whether they be owner-occupied or rental property, share certain inherent concerns with office
buildings, especially high-rise, and the same behavioral, operational physical, and technical precautions should be followed.
Some additional residential design considerations considerations are as follows:
• Building maintenance and cleaning must be ramped-up to provide even more protection against viruses.
• Common areas, lobbies, corridors, shared entertainments spaces and others must be utilized with the same social-distancing standards
as utilized in an office environment.
• Amenity areas (fitness rooms, lounges, business centers, community rooms, swimming pools, shared social/entertainment areas, etc.) must be designed or re-designed to foster social distancing, which may include layouts of more building area
• Information Technology must be upgraded to support more and better connectivity for the influx of those working from home
• Design trends must be studied, evaluated, and implemented for any new residential development. Trends may include increased unit size and physical accommodation of work-at-home areas and/or full home offices
• Package/mail delivery and pick-up must be designed with adequate space for the onslaught of on-line shopping deliveries, and to ensure that multiple residents can safely retrieve packages. (Note: This is not a “new trend”, but likely one that will expand due to COVID-19, but not necessarily change back once the pandemic is behind us)
High-rise and “urban” multi-family residential buildings will likely require more expensive systems and costly retrofit for the same reasons as high-rise office buildings. Primary reasons for this include limited points of entry, security/concierge check-in, and need to utilize elevators within social-distancing guidelines.
Educational Building Design Considerations for a Post Pandemic World
Jarmel Kizel Architects and Engineers is very active in the design of educational facilities, and has designed hundreds of child daycare centers across the country, for many of the known national brands. Although COVID-19 has proven to be less interested in youngsters than their parents and grandparents, protecting these precious boys and girls is an obvious necessity. This industry sector is different than others mentioned because operations are linked not only to building codes, but also to licensing requirements on a state-level. Even as restrictions
have been lifted to a large extent, it is unknown how many students and staff will be permitted in the building at any given time.
Operational and behavioral considerations are fairly obvious, including distancing of the youngsters from each other, vigilantly cleaning and disinfecting surfaces, and “eye-balling” boys and girls for potential symptoms. Some less obvious operational safeguards include the manner by which parents/guardians are permitted to enter buildings for pick-up and drop-off.
Many of the physical and technical considerations are similar to the aforementioned building uses, with a few industry-specific design considerations:
• Designing centers with more bathrooms to allow for less sharing of common facilities
• Addition of spaces dedicated for sanitizing teaching materials and toys
• Use of sterilization machines, where toys, books, pillows, blankets, etc. can be placed and sterilized overnight and when school is not in session
• Automation via voice activation and occupancy sensors, similar to those proposed for offices.
• Use of Ultra-violet and germicidal lighting, as proposed for office spaces.
Behavioral and technological recommendations for Child Daycare and Early Child Development should be consistent in “K-12” grade level school buildings as well.
Americans are outgoing and socially engaging by nature, and our culture has been deeply impacted by the voracity and spread of the COVID-19 virus. Many of us know someone who has suffered from it, or has even died, but we must focus our attention now on protection, prevention, and adaptation to the “post-COVID” way of life. If we continue to adhere to prescribed guidelines and common-sense, and the architectural and engineering community leads the way with innovative approaches to design, the virus AND its aftermath can soon be in our rearview mirrors, and the “New Normal” could become substantially similar to the “Old Normal”. We at Jarmel Kizel wish you and yours the best of health during this crisis, and always.
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South Jersey mall operator is preparing to throw open its doors — well, at least some of them.
Malls in Cherry Hill, Moorestown and Vineland will return Monday with limited access and hours that reflect the continuing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, said Philadelphia-based PREIT.
Its South Jersey properties — the Cherry Hill Mall, Moorestown Mall and Cumberland Mall — initially will operate only from 11 a.m to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
After spending months closed during the global pandemic, casinos and indoor dining will finally be able to reopen on July 2 at reduced capacity, Gov. Phil Murphy announced Monday morning via Twitter.
Both casinos and restaurants can reopen at 25 percent capacity just two days before the July 4 weekend. Health and safety guidelines will be announced “within the next several days,” said Murphy, who is scheduled to hold his June 22 COVID-19 press briefing at 2:30 p.m.
Outdoor dining and bars were allowed to reopen at reduced capacity on June 15—the official start of “Phase 2” of the state’s reopening, as the COVID-19 pandemic slows down in New Jersey.
Let’s look at the implications of returning to the office after COVID-19. As restrictions begin to ease, the focus of employers has shifted from trying to maintain operations through remote working, to returning to the office for their employees to the office. Employers will need to navigate a myriad of issues and pitfalls to successfully implement that transition to maximize their production, maintain their workforce, and to avoid costly litigation. In this guide, our employment group will highlight the challenges and solutions to these issues and provide employers with a blueprint for returning to the office.
Preparing for Employees’ Returning to the Office
Develop a Return to Work Plan. The process of returning to the office begins before the first returning employee steps through the door. Employers should first formulate a return to work plan that covers all phases of a return to the office, identifies areas of concern to be addressed, and provides for the enactment and implementation of new policies and procedures. Our employment group can assist employers through the creation and implementation of this plan.
Communicate with Employees. Effective and efficient communication is necessary to keep employees up to date on the latest decisions regarding return to work and the on-going effects of COVID-19. Effective communication will also serve to limit rumors, misinformation, and anxiety. Employers may consider having one point of contact for COVID-related happenings, creating specific communication channels for COVID news and updates, and even conducting anonymous surveys of their employees. Employers may also consider utilizing their communications system and their employment counsel to conduct employee trainings on the new office dynamics resulting from the pandemic.
Update Company Policies. Enacting these changes and other COVID-based changes will likely require employers to institute new polices governing their workplace. Some specific policies that employers should implement include: protocols for confirmed or suspected COVID cases; employees working remotely; wearing of masks and other personal protective equipment; medical questionnaires and temperature checks; limits on non-essential travel; revised policies on leaves of absence and workplace accommodations; benefits and compensation; and reinforce policies prohibiting discrimination, harassment and retaliation. Our employment group has significant experience in policy review and enactment with all manner of employers and businesses.
Renovate Physical Office Space. In addition to preparing the office through policies and procedures, employers must also look to prepare the physical workspace. During this time distancing and minimizing congregation are crucial. Employers should limit employees from gathering in groups in enclosed spaces. File rooms, copier rooms and kitchen are prime examples of tight quarters where employees were used to gathering. In some instances, employers may need to move workstations or significantly limit the use of other areas to ensure proper distancing is possible. Employers should also be providing masks, sanitizer and other sterilizing products to have employees maintain their own work area and to disinfect office-wide equipment and spaces after their use. Finally, employers must ensure that the entire office is cleaned as frequently and thoroughly as possible when employees have left for the day.
Employees Back in the Office
Staggered Work Schedules. Employers must evaluate whether they will bring back all of their employees at once or if some sort of staggered return is possible. This may include only bringing back truly essential workers, and/or instituting different schedules where some employees are in the office on certain days, i.e. Monday and Wednesdays, while other employees will be in the office on different days, i.e. Tuesday and Thursday. The key with such a staggered schedule is keeping employees’ cross-exposure to a limited group and ensuring thorough cleaning between work groups. Employers must also consider where their employees sit and whether they will implement some sort of rotation system for workstations.
Provision of PPE. Once the employees have returned to the office, employers must determine how they will handle the issuance of and requirements of wearing masks, maintaining distancing, and whether the employer will conduct medical testing such as temperature checks. Employers are able to inquire with their employees about their recent medical histories, and can monitor employees’ vital signs for indications of infection. However, these measures carry with them certain risks, most notably the requirements to preserve the confidentiality of employees’ medical information. Our employment group has medical questionnaires and health screening protocols we share with our clients to protect the employer and their workforce.
Stay Prepared. Just as important as preparing for a return to the office is preparing for and being flexible to accommodate a return to more remote operations. With new infections seemingly on the rise and the threat of a “second spike,” employers should also take this time to review what did and did not work during their remote operations and plan accordingly. Employers should institute specific policies for remote work, and clearly define expectations for employees working remotely.
The Threat of Litigation
One other area employers should prepare for is an incoming wave of litigation. Exposure to COVID-related litigation remains high as everyone is navigating uncharted waters and there is a constant risk of employee exposure and injury.
Update and Enforce Company Policies. Threats of litigation lie in mask requirements, ADA concerns, employee privacy related to health screenings, leave issues, and reductions to the workforce and associated whistleblower complaints. Having up-to-date policies that incorporate state and federal guidelines is necessary to defend against litigation. Failure to maintain and enforce policies will result in exposure and costly litigation.
Maintain Good Records. Employers should take care to ensure they have complete and detailed records for all employees including performance reviews, communications, and any complaints made by or against employees. Additionally, employers should seek the advice of counsel when dealing with employment situations to prevent a small issue from becoming a big and expensive problem. Although these measures cannot prevent employees form bringing suit, these efforts often put employers in a better position to defend and resolve claims in a much more cost-effective manner.
The road back to the office is an exceedingly long and complicated one, but with the right counsel by your side, these issues become exceedingly more manageable. Our employment practice is here to assist employers in all phases of their transition back to in-person operations. From creating an initial plan framework to defending against any employment-related claim, our team is with you every step of the way and will enable you to manage your workforce and preserve your business needs.
If you have questions about this new case and related issues, please contact Megan K. Balne at 856.355.2936 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Michael G. Greenfield at 856.355.2931 or email@example.com
New Jersey’s Governor announced the indoor portions of shopping malls will be able to open on June 29 with strict guidelines.
“This means limiting customers to 50 percent capacity and requiring employees to wear face coverings among other requirements,” said Gov. Phil Murphy.
Inside stores will follow mall anchor stores in reopening, which were allowed to accept customers starting Wednesday.
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said Thursday that the city could move to the green phase on July 3 if Covid-19 case numbers decline on par with health department goals. Philadelphia may move to green phase of reopening within several weeks … Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney signaled that Philadelphia could … The mayor said Thursday that the city’s declining numbers of positive Covid-19 cases could lead to the reopening of many local businesses in coming weeks.
The Trump administration on Wednesday released a new and simplified forgiveness application for small business owners who received a loan through the government-backed Paycheck Protection Program.
In a joint news release, the Small Business Administration and the Treasury Department announced they had posted a “borrower-friendly” five-page forgiveness application, which can be found on the SBA Website.
If you’re a freelancer or other self-employed person wondering if you’ll get forgiveness for loans taken out under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), yesterday brought good news. The SBA filed its 19th Interim Final Rule (IFR), scheduled to be published on Friday June 19th, focusing on revisions made from Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act (Flexibility Act) signed into law on June 5th. The unpublished version of the update ensures full forgiveness for self-employed, freelancers and independent contractors who took the maximum loan amount based on 2.5 times their 2019 monthly income. (Under previous rules, the eight-week limitation made it hard to get above the 75% payroll threshold.) Here’s what you need to know.
Retail sales shattered already-lofty expectations for May as consumers freed from the coronavirus-induced lockdowns began shopping again.
The 17.7% headline gain including food sales easily topped the previous record from October 2001 and beat the 8% estimate from economists surveyed by Dow Jones.