The Greater Way Forward - Update on COVID-19 and Convention Center Reopening

The Greater Way Forward

Update on COVID-19 and events

While we miss you and cannot wait to welcome you back, we remain committed to the best interests and well-being of our team members, clients, guests, and community.

Reopening Guidelines

In collaboration with the Washington Safe Meeting and Convention Coalition, the Greater Tacoma Convention Center and other facilities proposed guidelines for the reopening of the meetings industry in Washington State. 

On September 22, Washington Governor Inslee announced the reopening guidelines for Convention Centers, allowing us to reopen at a capacity of 200 people or 30% per meeting room for business meetings, testing, and educational opportunities, as well as weddings and funerals for up to 30 attendees. Floor plans to reduce occupancy can be customized to fit your needs. Please contact us for more information.

What To Expect

We are making modifications to ensure we meet reopening guidelines so our clients and guests feel comfortable returning and clients feel confident booking their next event. 

While we continue to follow this dynamic situation, we are working on our readiness plan and here is some of what clients and guests can expect in the coming months: 

  • Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC) Star Accreditation - GBAC STAR™ Certification is the cleaning industry’s only outbreak prevention, response, and recovery accreditation for facilities. The accreditation program is designed to establish a comprehensive system of cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention.
  • HVAC upgrades to improve indoor air quality, including BiPolar ionization units to reduce contaminated air particles, protecting people from airborne bacteria and viruses.
  • Electrostatic sprayers will be used to thoroughly disinfect between meetings. Electrostatic cleaning is a means of spraying a fine mist of positively charged disinfectant particles that adhere to surfaces and objects.
  • Water fountains will be replaced by single bottle fillers in public lobby areas.
  • All restroom facility fixtures will be touchless and air hand dryers disabled.
  • UVC cleaning technology added to escalators.
  • Employee training and healthy workplace protocols including use of appropriate PPE.
  • Frequent cleaning and sanitation of high touch and high traffic areas during events.
  • Hand sanitizer provided throughout the facility.
  • Physical distancing protocols established, including working with clients on adapted seating arrangements in meeting spaces. Clear signage will reinforce distancing and enforcement of physical distancing by staff in common areas such as lobbies, elevators and at entryways.
  • Staggered event times will be utilized if there are multiple events in the facility.
  • Creative modifications to food service with more pre-packaged individual service items.
  • Touch-free pay through app parking is available.
  • A controlled environment where attendees are pre-registered and contact information is retained by event planners.

Flexible Booking Guidelines

With the uncertainty of the phased reopening timeline for more than 200 attendees, we have implemented flexible booking guidelines to reduce worries for events in 2021 and beyond:

  • New business events can be booked for up to 200 people through December 31, 2020. Events with more than 200 people will be considered for January 2021 and beyond, with backup dates selected.
  • New events can be booked for up to 500 people for January, February and March with a maximum capacity of 50% of each event space. New Events of all sizes can be booked for April through December 2021. For all 2021 events, additional backup dates may be selected within the following 6 months and all deposits will be transferred to the new date.
  • Should event dates change within the 6 month window (or rooms need to change) due to phased guidelines from state government, additional rental fees will not be charged.

We will monitor the continually evolving guidelines through national, international, local and state health authorities while our team continues to create innovative solutions for clients and guests to gather in safe and healthy ways. 

We know there is a lot riding on events here – stay healthy and rest assured that we will continue to adapt and prepare for the greater way forward.