Circular City + Living Systems Lab

COVID-19 Rapid Response

Beginning in late May, during Phase 1 of the Washington State lockdown, researchers with the CCLS and UIL surveyed the exterior of nearly 1,000 food businesses in 16 neighborhoods throughout the City of Seattle. Over the course of a month, researchers photographed and documented every food business within the 16 survey areas and noted how each location adapted to meet the Phase 1 and Phase 2 COVID-19 social distancing requirements. These adaptations include new signage, provisions for customers waiting outside and new uses of existing conditions such as transforming windows into take-out counters. Adaptations will be cataloged spatially in plan, section, and axonmetrically to generate a set typologies of modifications that restaurants in Seattle employed throughout the reopening phases. In addition to food businesses, similar explorations were done of grocery stores as well as neighborhood farmers markets. Moving forward, the site research will be combined with a second round of field observations and interviews with store managers and owners. This data set will be used to analyze connections between economic success and recovery with the spatial adaptations that they employed.