Oak View Group, a global venue development, advisory, and investment company for the sports and live entertainment industries, has launched a new task force mandated to safely reopen America’s live entertainment and public facilities as soon as possible.
Comprised of leaders across all facets of facility operations, including sanitization technology and equipment, research and development, design, food and beverage, capital expenditure management, content, and more, OVG’s task force will provide development and operation protocols, guidance, and ongoing auditing of all COVID-19 and other infectious disease mitigation to ensure Americans can return safely to live entertainment facilities.
The team will review and test more than 180 products, solutions, and technologies to see which can be used in the most effective manner to protect all who enter into the facilities. It will develop industry standards to properly sanitize facilities as well as provide guidance on safety protocols for all venues using the most current and medically proven products and procedures. The group will specialize in making sure venues — the seats, concourses, restrooms, concession stands, locker rooms, staffing spaces, and clubs — are sanitized according to government health recommendations. The team will also take extra steps to ensure employees are screened on an ongoing basis for COVID-19 symptoms when they come into work, as well as to implement other security upgrades.
“Our team will be influential in implementing the new standards that will be adopted across the entire live entertainment industry,” said Tim Leiweke, CEO of Oak View Group. “The health and safety of fans, artists, and touring staff, during and after this evolving global pandemic, remains our top priority. By aligning ourselves with global companies, all which I consider the best in their respective fields, we are developing and executing the necessary standards to protect anyone who may enter live entertainment venues.”
To ensure a safe return to live venues during the 2020 calendar year, the task force will focus its attention across five pillars: developing standards along with its newly announced partnership with Delos, the Pioneer of Wellness Real Estate; testing solutions and technology; advising working groups on said standards and technology; advising the working groups on capital expenditure spends; and an auditing system that will lead to certification.
The task force will then develop a program based on the standardization to implement operational standards for all live entertainment and public facilities to follow. To deliver and execute these standards, the task force has developed a three-phased approach for facilities to follow in order to reopen: the creation of minimum operating standards to sanitize and cleanse facilities that align with Delos, a robust multi-day comprehensive training program for all staff and service providers involved in the production of events at facilities, and the development and implementation of an annual audit program and certification process to ensure venues are implementing and directing best practices.