With many buildings across Australia currently empty, AIRAH board member and Country Leader, Integrated Technologies – Digital Solution, at Johnson Controls Australia, Ura Sarfejoo, has highlighted the opportunity for facilities to consider upgrades to improve building efficiencies, without disruption to tenants.
Sarfejoo believes that with the current low occupancy rates in buildings, the maintenance of each building must continue for compliance with building codes and standards.
“Significant risks of poorly maintained and neglected buildings can include Legionnaires’ disease outbreak, the development of mould and rust, indoor air quality deterioration and unattended alarms,” she says.
“These are all risks that need to be mitigated from a health and safety, as well as legal perspective.”
Building owners should ensure that plant and equipment has been maintained. Landlords should also use this time to work with service providers to find greater building efficiencies, helping to control operational costs now and increase occupant comfort and savings into the future.
Sarfejoo advises owners and landlords to have a discussion with service providers, to see how to maintain essential services and compliance while getting additional value to cover for the reduced scope.
“Why not carry out the upgrade works that were scheduled or in the pipeline during the working day?” she asks.
“As hard as it is to imagine now, this challenging situation will come to an end hopefully sooner rather than later.
“Once it is over, we want our buildings and infrastructure to be able to ramp up to accommodate full capacity almost immediately.
“We do not want to waste any more time in preparing buildings for tenants to return.”