As hotels in the U.S. are forced to dramatically scale back operations or close altogether because of the new-coronavirus pandemic, government officials are looking to use the empty rooms to fight the spread of the virus or find a place for patients recover. Meantime, hotel operators are taking a fresh look at cleaning procedures to assure guests both now and in the future that their properties are focused on the health and safety of guests and employees. Read our blog that tells the steps California is taking to lease or buy hotels and compensate owners.
Commercial construction starts dramatically plummeted in April because of the coronavirus crisis, reports Dodge Data & Analytics. In May, commercial starts saw a slight uptick. Hotels under construction when the pandemic hit continue to move forward but contractors are challenged with the unexpected costs of providing workers with personal protection equipment and complying with OSHA’s newly minted health and safety standards. Hotel developers, meantime, are not in a hurry to see projects across the finish line as demand in travel remains low. Long Live Lodging reports about the state of hotel construction as part of our ongoing special report on the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hotel industry.
In the first quarter of this year, more than 140 new hotels opened in the U.S., reported Lodging Econometrics. In March, the U.S. had 150,000 rooms under construction, said STR. It’s the highest end-of-month total the company has reported. Jan Freitag, senior vice president of lodging insights at STR, said he expects hotel construction to read more