Your Safety is Our Primary Concern
Health, Safety, and Comfort
Whether you’re attending an event or meeting or planning one, you will want to know what precautions the Greenville Convention Center is taking to minimize health risks. Using CDC, state and city guidelines and recommendations, we have updated our already thorough cleaning guidelines and implemented additional processes and procedures to ensure your health, safety, and comfort. As protocols and guidelines from these entities continue to evolve, so will our policies moving forward.
Covid-19 Resumption Of Business Protocols
The Greenville Convention Center, managed by ASM Global, effectively closed for events in mid-March, 2020, in response to COVID-19. We have maintained staff on site since that time, and recently have accommodated miscellaneous public service activities such as media briefings, remote City of Greenville meetings, blood drives, COVID-19 testing and face mask distribution. While the building has not been shuttered, it has seen considerably less activity than normal. The following plan has been developed to make you better aware of the steps we’ve taken to create a safe event environment as we return to a more active event calendar.
Our re-opening plan has been developed in accordance with ASM Global’s VenueShield Program. This program includes best practices across work streams related to environmental hygiene, food service, customer journey, talent, public awareness and technology and equipment.
The comprehensive new protocol was developed in partnership with AECOM, the world’s premier infrastructure firm, and its international team of sports venue design, environment hygiene and biocontainment experts. The Venue Shield program is also being guided by scientific and medical research input from the Drexel University College of Medicine and its interdisciplinary team of expert faculty and graduate medical students.
Additionally, SERVPRO, the #1 choice in commercial cleaning and restoration services for more than 50 years, will serve as ASM Global’s primary partner in the implementation of the proactive viral pathogen cleaning process. The customized, in-depth workflows for venue re-occupancy include industrial disinfection and workforce safety initiatives, developed in accordance with national and international health agency guidelines.
Preparing for Your Return
The three primary hazards of re-opening a facility are mold, legionella and SARS-Cov 2. We have conducted a thorough walkthrough of the facility to ensure that mold growth and biofilms have not developed on compressors, coils fans, drip trays, in seams and other components. There has been no evidence of water intrusion and active mold growth.
We have taken the following water management program measures:
- Verified water heaters are set to at least 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Flushed all water system at points of use, such as taps, sinks and toilets.
- Our exterior decorative water feature has been drained.
- Drinking fountains are not in service.
- We have expedited the preventative maintenance schedule for cooling towers.
We have implemented the following mechanical system biocontainment plan:
- We have upgraded air filtration systems, with filter ratings of MERV 10 being used in exhibit halls and other large, part-time occupant areas. MERV 13 filters have been installed in units serving meeting rooms and administrative areas.
- Bathrooms have nominal inward directional airflow.
- Security and access control is strictly enforced for the building automation system and any equipment that can be used for the spread of a pathogen.
- Prior to a major event re-opening we will operate the HVAC system for a 48 to 72 hour“flush out” period, opening outdoor air dampers to maximum allowable while maintaining temperate control in the facility, and closely monitoring filter conditions. If odors suggest the presence of moisture or mold, we will reassess conditions and complete any necessary remediation.
- We will accelerate routine HVAC system checks to a weekly schedule, even for items typically reviewed monthly, quarterly, etc. These checks will continue until the restored system operations can be trusted and gradually move maintenance checks back to standard periods.
- Mechanical rooms will be maintained in a visibly clean state and will be disinfected on a regular basis. Areas include boilers, chillers, main electrical room, emergency generator room, electrical closets, main tele/data room, fire pump room, and elevator equipment rooms.
- Exhibit hall floors have been cleaned and disinfected immediately prior to re-opening.
Upon Your Return
- Hand sanitizing stations have been placed at all entrances, in high traffic areas, and as you exit escalators.
- The HVAC system serving the Woodside Conference Center meeting rooms functions on 100% fresh air exchange. Other building systems have been adjusted to maximize fresh air flow.
- The frequency of cleaning and sanitizing has been increased in all public spaces, with an emphasis on frequent contact surfaces such as public bathrooms, door handles escalator and stair handrails, elevators and elevator buttons.
- An Accelerated Hydrogen Peroxide (AHP) based disinfectant is used in most cases. Quaternary ammonium based disinfectant also is used in our kitchen areas.
Sufficient inventories of cleaning/sanitizing products have been secured.
Two thermal scanners are available to provide temperature checks.
Licensees will be required to complete an Event Operations Plan, until otherwise noted. The plan must be submitted 30 days prior to your event date and will designate an individual as a primary contact for all COVID-related issues. The plan also requires licensees to submit an operational plan consistent with CDC event planning guidelines.
We recommend that in addition to maintaining a roster of all event participants, whenever possible a seating record be maintained to assist in possible contact tracing.
Work Force Safety
- Employee health surveys are required on a weekly basis to help evaluate their ability to safely perform their jobs.
- Employee temperatures are taken prior to the beginning of each shift.
- Employees are required to use facial coverings when interacting with the general public or fellow staff members.
- Employees are encouraged to wash hands frequently throughout their work shift for a minimum of 20 seconds using soap and water.
- All personnel will maintain at least a six-foot distance between each other and take other precautions as required by appropriate governing authorities.
- Employees are instructed to stay home if they are feeling sick.
- Employees are encouraged to cover their mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.
- We are maintaining a sufficient inventory of soap and hand sanitizer.
- Whenever feasible, we are extending work-from-home options.
- We have implemented flexible sick leave policies and practices to enable employees to stay home when they are sick, are caring for someone who is sick, or who must stay home due to the closure of schools or child care centers.
If an employee becomes symptomatic during a shift the employee is to notify their supervisor and leave the building. The supervisor is to immediately notify the Human Resources Manager, who will coordinate return-to-work protocols per ASM Global policies.
We have adopted a number of new food and beverage guidelines as we re-open.
- We have provided physical guides in our permanent Café, such as floor decals and informational signage to ensure that individuals remain at least six feet apart when waiting in line to order.
- Our Café now incorporates separate means of ingress and egress.
- Café seating has been reconfigured to allow for social distancing.
- Food outlets feature disposable items including utensils and dishes.
- Plexiglas sneeze guards have been installed at Café points of sale.
- Hand sanitizers are available at all points of sale.
- Shared use of condiments have been replaced by individual serving packets.
- Touchless payment options are utilized whenever possible.
- Frequently touched surfaces such as pens, counters and hard surfaces are clean and disinfected at 20 minute intervals.
- Self-service food and beverage items have been suspended.
- All food and beverage staff members have completed the online certification for Covid-19 precautions through the National Restaurant Association.
- All food and beverage staff members have successfully completed and received certification for the Palmetto Priority Commitment through the South Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association.
All food and beverage staff members have been certified in either the ServeSafe Manager or ServSafe Food Handlers courses through the National Restaurant Association.
You will note a number of changes upon returning to the Greenville Convention Center.
- New door signage will separate entries and exits in order to maximize social distancing.
- Hand sanitizer dispensers are available at all staff and public entrances and near high contact areas.
- Hand sanitizer dispensers are located as you depart all escalators.
- Video displays and static signage throughout the facility consistently reinforce proper hygiene practice message.
- Elevator Etiquette decals encourage proper social distancing.
- Water fountains have been disabled.
- Depending on event specifications, secondary rest rooms will remain closed.
- Depending on event specifications, second building entrances will remain closed to the public.
- Whenever possible, building staff will be posted at primary entrance and open doors for arriving guests.
- The frequency of cleaning and sanitizing has been increased in all public spaces, with an emphasis on frequent contact surfaces such as public bathrooms, door handles, escalator and stair handrails, elevators and elevator buttons.
- The use of five-gallon general use water coolers has been suspended.
- All staff interfacing with the general public will be required to wear appropriate personal protective equipment, including facial coverings.
- Meeting room and exhibit hall capacities have been adjusted to accommodate adequate social distancing.
- Traffic flow in exhibit hall aisles will be one-way, whenever possible.
If a guest becomes symptomatic during an event, the guest will be directed to on-site medical support, if available. A first aid report including contact information will be completed. If the symptoms are severe 911 will be called. Otherwise the guest will be escorted from the building and the event’s primary COVID liaison will be notified.
After mapping out both our customer and employee journeys throughout the center, the goal with our messaging is to provide strategically placed information and safety reinforcements in actionable ways.
- Entrance and Exit Doors to Building and Main Rooms
- Welcome Desks
- Walls and Pillars throughout Building
- Elevators and Escalators
Together, through social distancing, the use of facial coverings and enhanced hygiene protocols, we can execute a responsible facility reactivation plan.