AIA Minnesota is following guidance from national and state public health experts regarding reducing risk related to the novel Coronavirus. Until May 29, 2020 all AIA Minnesota meetings, seminars, and events will either be held remotely, canceled, or rescheduled for later in the year, and the AIA Minnesota office will be closed.

Staff will be working remotely throughout the office closure; they can be reached using their regular phone numbers and email addresses. For general assistance, call us at 612-338-6763 or email info@aia-mn.org.

We are developing workarounds and revised processes related to on-site activities, such as processing of contract document orders, mail for affiliate organizations, receipt of Rapson Fellowship Competition boards, etc. Please check the website regularly for updates as this situation continues to develop.

Town Halls

In late March and early April, AIA Minnesota staff completed 17 Town Hall meetings with different segments of AIA Minnesota members and partners. To view notes from these Town Hall meetings, visit this webpage to request a password.

Resources

Health and Safety Resources

For additional guidance about how to keep yourself and your community safe, please refer regularly to guidance from the following official resources:

Governor Walz Stay at Home Executive Order

Minnesota DEED Critical Sector Worker Exemptions Information

World Health Organization

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Occupational Safety and Health Agency

Minnesota Department of Health


Business Resources

Minnesota Chamber of Commerce – Covid-19 Business Toolkit

“COVID-19 Relief Package to Include Small Business Loans”

Shared Work – Alternative to Layoffs – Shared Work is offered by the MN Unemployment Insurance (UI) Program to help employers avoid a layoff. You submit an application and a list of the selected employees that will work reduced hours during a temporary slowdown. They are paid unemployment benefits to offset part of their reduced wages.

Benefits of Shared Work:
– Keep experienced and trained staff
– Avoid future hiring and training costs
– Increase operations quickly when business conditions improve
– Avoid a layoff which creates goodwill and financial stability for the workforce and the community

SBA Disaster Loans – This program can provide low-interest loans of up to $2 million to businesses and private non-profits. These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills. The current interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses; for non-profits is 2.75%. These loans have long-term repayment options, up to a maximum of 30 years. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis, based on borrower’s ability to repay.

SBA Resource Partners are ready to help with no-cost, one-on-one business counseling regarding COVID-19.

Minnesota DEED Guide for Minnesota Small Businesses Who Need Help

Entrepreneur Fund has COVID-19 Updates & Resources and offering 30-minute consult with a Lender or Advisor by email or phone.

WomenVenture is open, ready to help and has created a COVID 19 Update Hub with details.

Minnesota DEED has created a Covid 19 webpage with Minnesota specific information to help small businesses.

WBDC/WBENC  Covid 19 resources for Women Owned Businesses

“Congress Passes Expansive Coronavirus Package, Including Paid Leave” (March 18)

Paycheck Protection Program Resources (Federal)

“Understand the Paycheck Protection Program” (from Economic Innovation Group)

“Evaluating COVID Business Relief Strategies” by Dr. Bruce Corrie provides an overview and comparison of options available to small businesses.

Minneapolis Federal Reserve Surveys

The Minneapolis Federal Reserve is surveying construction industry businesses every two weeks to gauge the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economic health of the state. These reports synthesize those responses.

Construction IMPACT: How COVID-19 is Silencing the Shovels (March 27)


Architecture Industry Resources

Coronavirus Construction Limits: State-by-State Tracker

Minnesota State Building Code Adoption Update (March 31) 

Architect Standard of Care Relative to Site Visits During the COVID-19 Pandemic – AIA (March 27, 2020)

DLI Guidance to Cities Related to Inspections

AIA Minnesota Member Resources – AIA Minnesota asked members to post their pandemic response plan to an open Google folder for others to learn from. Please note: because the situation and guidance from state and federal governments has been changing daily, these employers have likely revised their plans since being posted.

How Architecture Firms Are Responding to COVID-19 (ARCHITECT) – Updated periodically

How Autodesk is Helping Communities, Customers, and Employees Impacted by COVID-19

“Avoid Contract Default When Covid-19 Strikes” (Victor Risk Management Blog: Risk Management Guidance for Design Professionals)

“Architecture Firm Best Practices, Resources & Templates for Communications and Temp Policies in Response to COVID-19” by Practice of Architecture (living document)

“Pandemic Risks” (Victor Risk Management Blog: Risk Management Guidance for Design Professionals)

“Look to your contracts and OSHA during the pandemic” (Victor Risk Management Blog: Risk Management Guidance for Design Professionals)

Continuing ARCHITECT magazine Covid-19 coverage


AIA Resources

“Navigating the Economy: Architects Weather Ebb and Flow of Projects”

“AIA Update on Federal Relief Packages Approved Post COVID-19 Outbreak” (March 19)

Free AIAU Courses for AIA Members

Remote Work Resources

Software Resources for Remote Work

Harvard Business Review Guide to Managing Your (Newly) Remote Workers

An Architect’s Guide to Virtual Practice (AIA Trust)


If you have additional ideas for how AIA Minnesota or the local chapters can be helpful to you as a member during this time, do not hesitate to share them. We will consider every idea and respond based on the resources we are able to marshal.