How COVID-19 Pandemic May Alter The Way Canadian Cities Functions

December 20, 2020 05:51 PM AEDT | By Team Kalkine Media
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  • In the light of the coronavirus pandemic, people were forced to switch to a work-from-home routine.
  • Some specialists have opined that a fair share of offices may actually stick to the remote working routine full time even in post-pandemic times.
  • This change of routine, experts believe, could change the way cities function.

The COVID-19 pandemic has kinked the way our normal lives function. People around the world went from going to work to working from home, shopping online and relying on a homebody economy to maintain the social distancing protocols. 

While some cherished the comfort of working from the safety of home, others missed the office environment. Debate now lies on whether or not we are looking at a future where these pandemic-triggered changes would go away in a post-COVID world or they are here to stay.

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Work-From-Home & City Traffic

Nine months since the onset of the pandemic, many workers have returned to their workplace with proper precautions in place. And while most office spaces have incorporated a range of safety and hygiene protocols to keep the coronavirus spread at bay, the old tradition of crowded offices may just be behind us, thanks to technology.

Some specialists have also opined that a fair share of offices may actually stick to the remote working routine full time even in post-pandemic times, with some switching to a part-time telecommuting regime.

This change of routine, experts believe, could change the way cities function. With lesser people rushing into or across the city at a specific time to reach their office (aka, rush hour), traffic patterns are likely to change. This, in turn, could also see people limiting their visits to cities for specific experiences that they cannot get at home.

How The Lack Of Rush Hour May Impact Canadian Cities

The decline of the rush hour movement towards the city may not just impact city traffic, but also result in a shift in housing prices, structure of neighborhoods, public areas, transportation, etc., as per reports. At the same time, lesser employees gathering at a designated workplace has already led to a fall in the demand of office places for rent and sale.

However, a recent study by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) found that the future of commercial urban workplace still lie in uncertainty.

As for now, many tenants are relying on short term leases and holding off on any long term decisions. With the COVID-19 vaccines, a clearer picture of what’s in store for a post-pandemic office space may appear soon.

So, at the end of the day, should we expect our cities to be different in a post-COVID time from the one we are used to? The short answer is, only time can tell.


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