In This Issue
Designing Spaces for Masked Faces
The arrival of COVID-19 last March changed the way Alaskans live. Hand sanitizer and face masks became must-have items when leaving home, and phrases like “hunker down” and “social distance” became part of our daily lexicon.
Designing comfortable and productive workplace lighting solutions can be tricky in buildings flooded with sun in the summer and nearly bereft of natural light in the winter—but Alaska architects eagerly tackle the challenge.
When Bobby Wilken opened HooDoo Brewing Company on Halloween 2012, he envisioned a modest tap house where Fairbanks residents could get together to socialize over a craft beer.
The brewery was busy all winter and when the weather warmed, patrons began hanging out on a tiny deck next to the front parking lot. Wilken fenced in a small area, adding electrical spools for tables, and the rustic biergarten quickly became a favorite hangout, gradually expanding over the years.
In 2017, with a vision of European biergartens, “we decided to try to design the coolest biergarten we’d ever been in,” Wilken says. He added a covered area for food trucks to park, tables and benches, and heaters and outdoor lighting.
“To be an Arctic specialist, one has to have experience with cold climate means, methods, and materials applications in the Arctic, as well as an understanding of the logistics challenges,” says Richard S. Armstrong, founder of RSA Engineering.
Eventually Alaskan workers will return to the office, and the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a shift in thinking among business leaders about what constitutes the ideal workspace.
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