The coronavirus restrictions may be the case that the most flexible solutions to these new challenges become more widely adapted for use in other types of disaster relief. The idea of isolation could be transformed into a convenient local food market, for instance, say the architects from Rotterdam-based Shift architecture urbanism design studio.
Taking into account the coronavirus consequences, the authorities are rethinking the way of organizing many social places like stores and markets. In fact, a wave of infections results in additional rounds of isolation measures later in the year.
The new idea of how to avoid the infection’s spreading made the architects to divide one big market into micro-markets of three vendors only. The clearly-marked grids providing safe movement throughout is a must.
Across the globe, there are thousands of vulnerable communities depend heavily on their local markets, rather than stores, for food and other goods. To help alleviate some of the financial and food scarcity pressure on poorer families and individuals, Shift studio created a hyperlocal market design that keeps shoppers safe while social distancing.
Any open-air market can use the design. Rather than congregating in a single location, the market’s vendors split into groups of threes and set up around the outside of a 16-square grid with a single entrance and two exits.
Many micro-markets instead of one big local food market
The rules of the micro-market are simple. Only one person is allowed inside a square with a maximum of six people inside the market space at any one time. Each vendor is allocated a square for taking orders and an adjacent square for shoppers to collect their goods. When possible, vendors provide packages, rather than individual items, in order to maximise the speed of transactions and allow as many people as possible to shop.
Surprisingly, but coronavirus and restrictions revived the wide range of innovations helping prevent food deserts, strengthen local connections and keep independent retailers afloat during months of closures. In addition, the pandemic is certainly emphasising the importance of local trade and community connections.