Today we speak with Jeremy Spencer, owner and founder of Positive Footprints. The response is in its entirety and has not been altered in any way, save for grammatical or style purposes.
Yes, quite surreal times. As you may know, we do both design and construction as sustainably as possible.
The design side is definitely slowing down. We have only had a couple of enquiries since lockdown, and one client in early design stage has put a job on hold.
We are currently working through jobs we have on the books, and also starting design on a new "Future Series" of sustainable project homes. These will be electric vehicle ready, bike parking, large integrated solar to the roofs, and designed to minimse end of life impacts in deconstruction - on top of our normal passive design, low VOC, and rainwater reuse/water efficiency, etc. And hopefully a new fresh look.
So that's what we are doing with potentially extra time in the design side of the business.
Healthwise, in the office now it’s just me and my designer wife, with others working from home.
In building, we have firstly made sure that sites are stocked full of materials, so we have plenty of work to go on with in the event of material shortages, or price hikes.
Luckily, we have only have a small carpentry team, and multiple projects, so if anyone feels at all off they can work by themselves for multiple days to see if a slight tickle in a throat goes away or is more serious.
When more than one is on site, usually we can have someone working inside and someone outside. Stagger break times. And social distance.
The guys also have masks and sanitisers when a two-person job is required. They are all currently wearing work gloves too, as you are much less likely to touch your face or mouth or eye if you are wearing old work gloves!
With our trades, we are generally only having one on site at a time, so this may slow construction a bit. And of course, we have plenty of Covid-19 toolbox meetings, and induct trades into distancing and cleaning rules onsite.
All in all, we are doing what we can and crossing our fingers that the virus passes us by. If anyone did get it would probably mean a shutdown of Positive Footprints for at least two to three weeks while everyone self-isolated or got tested.
So, all in all, not unhappy with things at the moment. May get some support from the government and things seem a bit less rushed with things forced to go a bit slower. So, it sort of feels like each day is a permanent Friday which always seems to have less emails and phone calls.
So maybe that's a positive. Plus, the extra time to focus on the Future Series, which I have wanted to do for a while now but never found the time, is also a benefit of the crisis.