As we approach the three-month milestone since the official restart of construction in NYC, it is an appropriate time to observe how the construction industry has responded to the required workplace health changes and what contract changes may need to be addressed in the future.

While the construction industry has always considered safety to be paramount, wider public health practices have been introduced and incorporated on job sites, enabling most to return to full operation.

Across the city, all participants in the construction process have been tasked with reconsidering all aspects of their daily activities. The need to move adequate tradespeople and materials vertically throughout the job has led to the introduction of staggered starts to allow for social distancing compliance not only within the hoist, but in wait areas at grade and on landing areas throughout the site.

Increased job site hygiene, as well as enhanced health screening requirements and the recording of all individuals on-site, have been embraced by an industry that has always adapted to continue through times of adversity.

“Our role as project managers is to bring together our general contractors, subcontractors and design team to work with the Department of Buildings and other agencies to create and maintain a work environment that reassures all on-site that they can work safely and productively,” said Gavin Middleton, chief operating officer at leading New York City-based construction advisory Lehrer Cumming.

Keeping worker morale high by enforcing these strict health screenings and hygienic behavior requirements has also led to the mandatory sanitation of tools and machinery multiple times throughout the day. Creating environments where workers feel comfortable and safe, while still successfully navigating the ever-changing material and scheduling disruptions, is what has allowed many