by STIRworldJun 05, 2020
Cairo-based architect and cross-disciplinary designer Mohamed Radwan has conceived an innovative solution for offices functioning during the COVID-19 lockdown. The project, titled ‘Q.workntine’ has been developed with an aim to provide safety to those who are working in the field of essential services in these uncertain times.
Designed as an air-tight pod system in a hexagonal beehive-shaped layout, the motive is to 'provide safety and protection within the physical workplace, while maintaining the same number of employees per square meter as a traditional office system'.
"With the world under lockdown for an extended period of time, some essential businesses still have to keep at least the bare minimum of its workforce, working physically on site to provide necessary and vital supplies for the health supply chain. And the longer the quarantine continues, more companies may be forced to do the same, as shortages will hit the global market,” explains Radwan, whose anti-COVID-19 concept won the DNA Paris Design Award recently in the category of 'Responsible Design'.
'Q.workntine' is conceived to adapt different spatial requirements; each pod that makes up the working space can be customised to fit in right angles or elongated to create a management module with seats for senior executives.
The design features an optimised automated system that ensures both safety and a comfortable work environment. Each of the pods are equipped with an automatic handless air-tight acrylic door that functions by facial recognition. Two fans with built-in air purifiers fitted on the roof ensure adequate ventilation that will keep the interiors fresh and airy. The skin of the pods is envisioned as made of a non-porous material that can be easily cleaned and disinfected to avoid spread of the virus.
The concept follows both social distancing measures and the idea of working together with the same workforce where the clusters of pods can be arranged depending on the layout of the office space.
'Q.workntine' was shared with #DubaiIDEATHON – an initiative launched by Dubai Culture & Arts Authority and the Art Dubai Group that invited proposals, which could respond to the challenges in the creative and cultural sectors caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to Radwan’s project, creatives from the world over are joining hands and innovating products and spaces that could not only aid in the current crisis but can also fit in the post-pandemic world. These include an array of face shields by distinguished architects such as BIG, and Foster + Partners; shipping containers turned self-standing hospitals and a wardrobe purifier by Carlo Ratti Associati; and a safe dining concept by France-based designer Christophe Gernigon.