IMC has continually monitored guidance issued by the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), industry groups, and others. We have reviewed the reopening plans of some of the key players in the office, retail, hospitality, and gaming sectors for best practices, consulted with suppliers and service contractors, and have tracked mandates and recommendations of federal, state, and local governments for the jurisdictions in which IMC operates. In addition, IMC has engaged an Emory University-based epidemiologist, Dr. Carlos del Rio, to consult in the preparation and implementation of this reopening program. Finally, IMC has tapped a cross-functional team on its own staff to produce a set of protocols to guide the process of reopening our facilities. Our requirements for operating daily business and Markets at this time are detailed here and may be added to or adjusted at any time as new information becomes available.
Our requirements for operating daily business and Markets at this time are detailed below and in our comprehensive reopening plan, and may be added to or adjusted at any time as new information becomes available.
Tenant and Exhibitor Operating Guidelines
The Health & Safety Task Force at International Market Centers has been working to establish operating guidelines for Tenants and Exhibitors to implement during Markets. These guidelines include food and beverage policies, registration changes, mask policies, showroom capacities, security, logistics and more.
- AmericasMart Atlanta 2020 | Daily Business, Fall Design Week, Fall Cash & Carry – Download Here
- VOW | New World of Bridal and October Atlanta Apparel 2020 – Download Here
- High Point Market | IMC Properties – October 13-21, 2020 – Download Here
July 15, 2020 Update | IMC Repositions August Markets as Showroom-Only Buying Opportunities
After much consideration and based on recent developments related to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have decided to suspend tradeshow presentations at our summer markets in Atlanta and Las Vegas. Participating permanent showrooms will remain open during previously published dates:
- World of Prom & Social Occasion, August 3-7
- August Atlanta Apparel, August 4-8
- Atlanta Market (Gift & Home), August 13-18
- Las Vegas Market, August 30-September 3
Read more information here.
Market Reopening Webinar Materials
IMC hosted a webinar on June 17, 2020. Dr. Carlos del Rio, MD of Emory University School of Medicine joined the IMC leadership team and Task Force to discuss the reopening plan and answered questions related to COVID-19’s impact on our Market procedures in Atlanta, High Point NC and Las Vegas – including use of PPE, social distancing protocols, logistical changes and more.
Watch the Recording Here
Download the Presentation Materials Here
What to Expect at Market
At a minimum, our Markets will require social distancing, consistent use of PPE, and for increased hygiene of both individuals and the facilities. Here’s what you can expect as you arrive on our campus:
- Building access points will be controlled to manage the flow of customers at entrances and exits.
- To minimize queueing at registration stations, all buyer and designer attendees must preregister online. A visitor who has not preregistered will be asked to step out of the queue and complete the registration process on a mobile device.
- Touchless temperature checks, either by thermometer or thermal imaging equipment, will be administered each time you enter the building
- Personal Protective Equipment. Appropriate masks or face shields of a type approved by the CDC must be properly worn by visitors at all times while in or about the buildings, without exception. Masks must at all times cover the nose and mouth of the wearer and may be of the reusable, fabric variety or three-ply disposable masks. Masks are more effective than face shields alone, but face shields may be worn by individuals who have a medical reason not to wear a mask. Face shields, if worn, must cover the face fully from forehead to below the wearer’s chin and wrap around the sides of the wearers face. IMC will supply each entrant who does not have his or her own PPE with a disposable mask, hand sanitizer, and a one-page explanatory piece communicating the requirements of access to the property. At the point of screening, Security personnel will also provide visitors with a verbal summary of the distancing and PPE and hygiene requirements.
Note: Many IMC customers have PPE supplies available for buyers and exhibitors to purchase.
- Hand sanitization stations will be located throughout campus
- Physical distancing measures for foot traffic, queues, restroom access, and otherwise will be implemented as needed or mandated.
- Everyone on campus will be requested to wash their hands thoroughly with soap for at least 20 seconds approximately once per hour, and after using the restroom, coughing, sneezing, touching the face, blowing the nose, cleaning, smoking, eating, or drinking. The use of hand sanitizer is advised when washing is not practical.
- Elimination of self-service food and beverage options and coffee service. Concessions will be administered solely by contracted national providers with offerings organized around pre-wrapped, “grab-and-go” options.
- In-person events will shift to virtual offerings online, and lounges and other gathering places will be closed to promote social distancing.
Enhanced Housekeeping Measures
In early March, 2020, IMC took steps to enhance its housekeeping measures in response to the COVID-19 threat. These enhancements to the cleaning specifications stress frequent, meticulous cleaning of the campuses, with particular emphasis on the utilization of EPA List N chemicals or products for the cleaning and disinfection of the high-touch points of the facilities.
Protective Measures for Freight
Freight has continued to move into and out of the buildings throughout the closure. Steps will be taken to minimize the risk of introduction of COVID-19 into our properties through the receipt, handling and delivery of tenants’ freight or of bulk supplies procured by IMC. These measures may include:
- Use of PPE by freight handlers.
- Requirement that all tenant freight must be palletized, shrink-wrapped or crated to minimize the need for individual handling.
- Use of portable, foggers and mechanical sprayers which can be used to disinfect an inbound freight shipment before it is delivered to the showroom, the interior of a trailer prior to unloading, or forklifts, pallet jacks, floats and freight elevators used for conveyance into the building.
- Staggering dock appointments to minimize tenant-to-tenant contact.
- Requiring, on an interim basis, that IMC personnel move all freight, suspending temporarily the practice of lending equipment to tenants. Similarly, IMC personnel would have exclusive control of the freight elevators to maintain elevator occupancy in keeping with social distancing protocols, and to ensure that freight elevators do not become an access point to the building, bypassing screening procedures.
Transportation & Parking
All vendors that we partner with, such as shuttle operators, will be required to adhere to the same standards as IMC staff. Additionally, the following are detailed statements from local transportation providers:
- MARTA (Atlanta rapid transit) COVID-19 Policies and Procedures
- Lyft and Uber have established new safety measures including a requirement that all riders and drivers must wear face masks.
Our housing partners have compiled tips for a healthy hotel stay and Las Vegas hotel statements on new or extended hygiene and sanitation processes, and other national hotel and accommodations brand policies are detailed below.
- Hilton: Defining a New Standard of Hotel Cleanliness
- Hyatt Global Care & Cleanliness Commitment
- IHG Commitment to Cleanliness Info Sheet
- Marriott Launches Global Cleanliness Council
- Omni Hotels and Resorts Safe & Clean
- Coronavirus information from Airbnb
Dining & Amenities
All vendors that we partner with for daily or Market operations will be required to adhere to the same standards as IMC staff.
For buyers, concessions will be administered solely by contracted national providers with offerings organized around pre-wrapped, “grab-and-go” options.
For exhibitors, all catering vendors must abide by temporary restrictions due to COVID-19, including that all food and beverage must be individually packaged or packaged in a way which reduces touching from multiple people. When planning catering needs, physical distancing should be followed inside showrooms to manage occupancy density. Accordingly, no buffets, uncovered platters, shared containers, etc. are allowed in the building at this time, and showrooms must register any caterers other than certain designated preferred vendors to make sure they can comply with all IMC protocols.
Tenants & Staff
Our tenants, employees, and any temporary staff we employ will be subject to all of the protocols listed above as they relate to screening, PPE, physical distancing, and hygiene.
It will not be possible to eliminate entirely the risk that a tenant, employee or visitor will come into contact with the Coronavirus – or with someone who is carrying it – despite the measures outlined above. We believe, however, that the proper and consistent implementation of these protocols will make IMC’s campuses as safe as can reasonably be achieved, and far safer than many public environments.
Visiting Between Markets: Open Year Round
For Open Year Round showrooms and until further notice, the following protocols are in effect at all IMC campuses for visits outside of designated Market events:
Effective June 15, 2020, we will open all IMC locations for daily access with the following guidelines in place in accordance with basic operating requirements for safe hygiene and social distancing to ensure the health and safety of all constituents.
- Temperature checks will be required for all customers and showroom partners upon arrival at the building. Anyone with a recorded temperature in excess of 100.4 ° F will not be granted access to the building.
- All customers and showroom partners must wear an approved personal protective mask at all times throughout the building and in their showrooms while in the presence of others. If a buyer arrives at our campus without a mask, they will be issued one by IMC. Customers without masks will not be granted access.
- Access points to our campuses will be limited to monitor traffic and conduct temperature checks.
- All tenants are expected to monitor and manage their showrooms for compliance with safe distancing, prescribed occupancy restrictions, use of PPE, and cleaning protocols.