COVID-19 - 2019 Novel Coronavirus

Spaces

U of G is committed to providing a safe environment where our community can study, research, work and live. The following guidelines can help you safely navigate campus.

Learn which buildings, facilities and services are available on campus.


Updated: June 17, 2021

In general, all those on University of Guelph campuses are required to wear masks when indoors. You must also wear a mask when you are outdoors and unable to maintain 2 metres of distance from others. This includes classrooms, hallways, washrooms, stairways, meeting rooms and common spaces. Visit the Masks section of this site for more information and details on accommodations.

Rules for masks in labs are addressed in the Research Phase-in Framework and Research Management Plans.


Custodial Services’ cleaning protocols follow the recommendations of Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health and government agencies. Learn more about the University’s cleaning measures during COVID-19 and about building readiness and ventilation on the Physical Resources website.

Ventilation

Updated: August 12, 2021

Physical Resources has assessed ventilation in all classrooms scheduled for use this fall. Before classes begin in September, all classrooms that will be in use will have ventilation measures in place that provide for the equivalent of six air changes per hour (ACH). Air movement and air purifiers will allow these spaces to reach this ventilation target – a measure equal to the standard in place for medical examination rooms.  A summary of the measurement and assessment results for these classrooms can be found on the Physical Resources website. 

U of G is adjusting mechanical systems to ensure they continue running at high-quality standards. We are maximizing the flow of outside air into all campus buildings and are purging the air in buildings at the start and end of the day.

All classrooms scheduled for the Fall 2021 semester have had ventilation measurements and assessments completed through Physical Resources, Maintenance and Energy Services. All assessed spaces have achieved six effective air changes per hour either through actual air movement or augmented by air purifiers. If additional learning spaces are opened for fall 2021, we will assess those spaces as well.

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All buildings are running on maximum outside air flow – this includes HVAC units that service offices. Classrooms, seminar spaces and teaching labs were specifically assessed due to the occupant proximity and loading. These spaces will run with a minimum threshold of six equivalent air changes per hour. Some spaces are serviced with HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filtration purifiers. Summary data of the measurement and assessment results is being tabulated and posted on the physical resources website. If additional learning spaces are opened for fall 2021, we will assess those spaces as well.

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Classroom air flow devices are being left “open” in order to maintain the same airflow the space had at the time it was assessed and achieved the six air changes per hour (ACH) standard.  Demand control ventilation systems within the digitally controlled spaces have been disabled, and the pneumatic controls in the non-digitally controlled spaces are disabled as well for varying air volumes to maintain the minimum six ACH standard. Measurements were completed with PR’s trades workers and a National Environmental Balancing Bureau certified consultant.

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We have not faced this situation; all scheduled classrooms were able to achieve six effective air changes per hour, generally with their own HVAC systems and by exception with augmentation from air purifiers using HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air filtration) filtration and ultraviolet (UV) treatment systems.

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The purifiers are Sanuvox S300 units, which run at 59 decibels at five feet. They are very quiet technology – 59 decibels is the equivalent to a quiet conversation

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All scheduled classrooms achieved the six effective air changes per hour with actual air movements or augmented by air purifiers. If there are any long-standing problematic rooms, please let PR know their location by contacting wo@pr.uoguelph.ca.

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Our standard of six air exchanges per hour is based on the recommendation for medical examination rooms where there may be aerosols present. The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health recommends at least four air exchanges per hour for continuously occupied classroom spaces. 

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Public Spaces

Updated: August 31, 2021

  • Wear a mask.
  • Maintain distance from others in all high-traffic areas, including hallways, stairways and queues.
  • When entering or exiting a building, keep to the right on your way through doors.
  • In queues, follow sign guidelines that indicate where to wait, or stay 2 metres apart if no signs are visible. As a courtesy to others, try to keep the queue from blocking the flow of traffic.
  • Please be mindful that persons who are blind or have low vision may have difficulty perceiving floor markings. Be gracious and discreet when offering help.
  • In stairways, keep to the right. Narrow stairways may be marked as Up Only or Down Only to help maintain distance.
  • In an emergency, vacate the building as quickly as possible. Navigational signs do not apply in an emergency.

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  • Entrances to shared spaces may be marked to indicate the maximum room occupancy. Please adhere to the maximum occupancy.
  • Seats may be marked with a check or a cross to indicate where you can or cannot sit to maintain physical distance. Do not bring additional chairs into meeting rooms and lounges.
  • Do not lie down on benches.

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  • Wear a mask.
  • Treat smaller washrooms as single occupancy if 2 metres of space cannot be maintained.
  • In larger washrooms, maintain 2 metres of space from others.
  • Use only stalls, urinals and sinks marked with a check.
  • Wash your hands.
  • Use a paper towel or other barrier (e.g., sleeve) to open the door when you leave.

If you have concerns about accessibility or need accommodation, please contact the Office of Diversity and Human Rights at dhrinfo@uoguelph.ca.

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  • If you are able, please take the stairs and leave the elevator for those who need it. Be kind! Remember: not all accessibility needs are evident.
  • All elevators have signs to indicate the maximum number of occupants allowed at a time. In most elevators, only one occupant is allowed at a time.
  • When riding an elevator with others, wear a mask and maintain as much space from others as possible.
  • Use a barrier (e.g., sleeve, clean tissue) to press elevator buttons.
  • Avoid touching your face after pressing the elevator buttons.
  • Wash or sanitize your hands after using the elevator.

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Campus dining options are open, including:

Please observe seating signs in our dining spaces, including in Branion Plaza, and only sit in designated spots. Tables will be sanitized as required. If you choose to eat in other outdoor spaces, bring disinfectant wipes to clean outdoor tables and benches before using them.

Vending machines on campus are stocked regularly

Our dining facilities are now cashless. Plan to pay with your Campus Card, debit or credit.

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  • Health Services and the Health and Performance Centre are open by appointment in the J.T. Powell Building. Call to book an appointment at 519-824-4120, Ext. 52131.
  • Counselling, sexual violence supports, student accessibility services and health promotion programs are available by phone or online appointment.
  • Learn more about the services available and health protocols by visiting the Student Wellness website

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Administrative Spaces – Offices and Around Campus

Updated: July 29, 2021

Faculty and staff should follow their Operational Plans when coming to work on campus and follow these protocols:

  • Disinfect shared workstations before use. Don’t assume that the previous user disinfected the space after they were done.
  • Shared break rooms and kitchenettes may have fewer amenities (e.g., microwaves, fridges, coffee machines). Seats may be marked with a check or a cross to indicate where you can or cannot sit to maintain physical distance. Do not bring additional chairs into break rooms or rearrange furniture.
  • Disinfect shared equipment such as printers and photocopiers before use. Do not assume the previous user disinfected the equipment after they were done.
  • De-clutter office spaces as much as possible to make cleaning easier.
  • Hand sanitizing stations will be available in certain highly visible areas.
  • Follow all directional signs.
  • Read our Practices page to learn more about workplace etiquette including department events.

Learn more about the University’s cleaning measures during COVID-19 and your responsibilities on the Physical Resources website.

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Updated: July 29, 2021

Visit the Physical Resources website for information on community members’ and Custodial Services’ responsibilities for cleaning different areas within the University.

Personal workspaces should be regularly cleaned and disinfected by staff who work in the area using appropriate cleaning solutions as recommended by Physical Resources.

Protocols for cleaning learning spaces are available in the Fall Classroom Health and Safety Protocols document.

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To support physical distancing, meetings and events should take place through Microsoft Teams or Cisco WebEx, even when attendees are on campus.

Meeting Guidelines

To help promote physical distancing, refrain from scheduling in-person meetings whenever possible. Continue to use Microsoft Teams or Cisco WebEx when you need to meet or collaborate with others, even for small, on-site gatherings.

In-person gatherings should be limited. That means restricting the number of people who need to meet face-to-face (while following room capacity limits) and limiting how often such meetings occur. If you need to meet in-person, masks must be worn and attendees must be able to maintain 2 metres of physical distance.

Outdoor meetings should also be considered, when possible and weather permitting.

Meeting Room Requirements

Departments, in consultation with Physical Resources, are responsible for determining shared meeting room capacities and furniture configurations that ensure attendees can maintain 2 metres of physical distance.

Departments must:

  • remove or stack chairs that will not be used
  • ensure that indoor meetings occur in spaces that are properly ventilated
  • post signage for room occupancy limits, maintaining physical distance between attendees, and cleaning requirements
  • adhere to room capacity limits (i.e., if a room is limited to a maximum of 5 people, no more than 5 people can meet in that space)

Department Social Events

Department social events such as retirement celebrations, service recognition, and celebrations of other important work and life events are an important way to show appreciation for employees. With many employees working off-campus, these events should continue to take place to help build social connections and engagement. But, it is crucial that such events are hosted safely.

Department social events should be encouraged, provided they take place online (e.g., Teams and WebEx) to support physical distancing.

If your team is mostly “deskless” an in-person event can be considered, as long as:

  • a detailed plan is submitted to your unit’s department head (dean or AVP) for approval before the event is scheduled
  • the event is hosted in a space that allows proper physical distancing (e.g., in a large meeting room or outdoors for 2 metres of space between attendees)
  • the number of attendees is limited to no more than 10
  • masks are worn

Employees who are working remotely should not be asked to attend social events on campus.

Department heads should consult with their Human Resources or Faculty and Academic Staff Relations representative and  their Environmental Health and Safety representative in decisions on in-person social events.

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Visit the Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) COVID-19: Guidance for Employees Travelling in a Vehicle page for the most up-to-date information.

For any concerns or inquiries related to COVID-19 and working safely, please contact Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) at ehs@uoguelph.ca or Occupational Health and Wellness (OHW) at ohw@uoguelph.ca

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Classroom Spaces

Updated: September 3, 2021

Please follow U of G’s Classroom Health and Safety Protocols while in our classrooms.

Student Study- and Workspaces

Added: July 29, 2021

The University of Guelph has developed a Student Study Space framework to help phase in access to on-campus study- and workspaces for undergraduate and graduate students.

As we make plans to reopen study spaces, the collective health, safety, and well-being of our community is the University’s first priority.

All University of Guelph buildings are open. Popular study spaces include the University Centre, McLaughlin Library and Summerlee Science Complex. Remember to keep distance from others and wear a mask when studying indoors.

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If you choose to use on-campus study- or workspaces, you are responsible for the following:

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Graduate students who need access to their office or other workspace following their area’s Operational Plan. Talk to your chair or director for more information.

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U of G buildings are open and accessible. Access to study space may change in response to evolving University, Public Health or Government directives. Provisions must be made so that any student study- or workspace that is made accessible can be quickly closed down should changing health conditions require it.

As decisions are made about opening access to student spaces, principles of equity, diversity and inclusion should be considered.

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Research Spaces

Updated: July 21, 2020

The Research Phase-In Framework from the Office of Research has been created to guide the resumption of more of our research activities.

This framework should be used by colleges, academic units and researchers to develop and approve plans necessary to start research activities requiring the use of University of Guelph-operated facilities (including offices and field sites).

Residences

U of G’s residences are a home away from home for many of our students and an important aspect of community. Visit the Student Housing website for guidelines on living in residence during COVID-19.

Review the Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) COVID-19: How to Work Safely in Student Residences or Family Housing Units page for the most up-to-date information for employees who are required to work inside an occupied unit in student residences and family housing sites to help prevent transmission of COVID-19 between employees and occupants.

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Prayer Spaces

Added: August 18, 2021

Two prayer spaces are currently available on campus for individual prayer by students, staff and faculty.

Students, staff and faculty can access on-campus prayer space in:

  • Mussalah – University Centre, Room 008B for Muslim prayer
  • Multi-Faith Room – University Centre, Room 533 for multi-faith prayer

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Before using on-campus prayer space, individuals must:

  • Being vaccinated against COVID-19 or having and approved exemption.
  • Complete the COVID-19 Infection Prevention and Control Awareness Training course before coming to campus.
  • Complete the U of G COVID-19 Screening Form every day before coming to campus and follow its directions. Do not come to campus if you are told to isolate. If you become sick while on campus, go home as soon as possible. Avoid public transit and take measures to protect others around you.
  • Disinfect shared surfaces within the prayer space before and after use. Use provided supplies.
  • Maintain 2 metres of distance from others at all times and wear a mask.
  • Wash or sanitize your hands after using the prayer space.
  • Follow signage for movement through the space (e.g., entry or exit only doors, directional arrows, etc.).
  • Not linger prior to or following prayer. No waiting areas or lounge spaces will be used.
  • Report hazards and concerns to the University Centre Administration.

All objects used (e.g., prayer mats) are for individual use only, cannot be shared and must not be stored in the spaces.

Wudu rooms are not available at this time.

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Access to prayer spaces will be expanded in a measured way, as it is safe to do so. Access to prayer space may change in response to evolving University, public health or government directives. Provisions must be made so that any prayer space that is made accessible can be quickly closed down should changing health conditions require it.

As decisions are made about opening access to prayer spaces, principles of equity, diversity and inclusion will be considered.

Users of prayer spaces must follow the responsibilities listed in the previous FAQ.

All objects used (e.g., prayer mats) are for individual use only, cannot be shared and must not be stored in the spaces.

Wudu Rooms are accessible by signing the key out from the Mussalah  – University Centre, Rooms 002A and 006A.  Max. capacity of 1 person per space.

Read the full University Centre Prayer Spaces -Return to Campus Plan for more information.

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Athletics Centre

Updated: July 29, 2021

The U of G Athletics Centre is open. Visit the Athletics website to learn more.