COVID-19: Helping Communities Respond

At WSP, we are driven by one question: can we help societies thrive in a world we do not control? The need to help our clients and communities prepare for a rapidly changing future and unforeseeable events is at the core of who we are as a company.     

COVID-19 Rapid Response

When time is of the essence and there is no room for error, WSP’s experienced emergency response teams are ready to help. Across the U.S., our experts are providing a range of services – coordinating logistics at emergency operations centers, managing equipment procurement and distribution activities, and advising healthcare clients.

COVID-19 Rapid Response

Moving Forward Together

As we assess the impacts of COVID 19 and plan a new, better path forward, WSP experts are helping public and private clients reconfigure workspaces, plan operational and project recovery, rethink 2020 disaster preparedness and design resilient infrastructure for a safer, stronger future.

Moving Forward Together

While COVID-19 has dramatically altered the way we interact with the built environment and rocked the economy, WSP planners and engineers are always prepared for the unexpected. Through WSP’s Future Ready™ approach, our teams regularly work to anticipate future conditions to deliver solutions today that account for the challenges and changes our world faces tomorrow.

How can we help you navigate the new reality? Please read on and reach out for more information.


Moving Forward Together


Operational Continuity

WSP consultants are currently working with public and private clients across the country to adjust to current budget and personnel shortfalls while keeping critical projects in motion. WSP is helping to get programs back on track in communities large and small, ensuring solid footing for the months and years to come, no matter what comes our way.


  • Business continuity planning
  • Risk assessment and disaster scenario planning
  • Environmental, health and safety audits
  • Facility use studies
  • Guidelines and best practices
  • Economic development
  • Strategic communications
  • Hazard mitigation planning


Economic Resources and Strategic Consulting

The severe short-term impact of COVID-19 on the nation’s economy is driving organizations to revisit core priorities and capital investment needs and anticipate infrastructure economic stimulus efforts. Our advisors— including former federal, state and local executives and officials, and senior planning, policy and grant program leaders — leverages emergency response and recovery planning experience to proactively implement robust strategic planning processes. Since 2009, our team has helped secure over $25 billion in federal grants and loans for over 140 projects nationwide.



  • Infrastructure Recovery Competitive Grants: grant opportunities identification, evaluation of projects for competitiveness, economic impacts and cost-benefit analysis, grant application development
  • Infrastructure Financial Recovery Strategies: funding options evaluation, program/project revenue analysis, capital plans review and reprioritization, financial and scenario planning
  • Infrastructure Enterprise Recovery Strategies: operations continuity planning; sustainability and resiliency planning; recovery management, coordination, tracking and reporting; procurement management support
  • Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Hazard Mitigation Funding: assessments of allowable reimbursement; preparation and processing of public assistance claims; GIS mapping; individual assistance support; audits and appeals; master plan formulation and consultation; grant management system integration


A Changing Workplace

COVID-19 has fundamentally changed the way we feel about coming to the office. Our engineers can assess your existing workspace and create a plan to help your team and those you serve use your existing spaces safely. And when you’re ready to design your next space, our workplace experts can help you create an office that makes employees feel safe, drives productivity and encourages them to want to return to the office.


  • Facilities decontamination and disinfection
  • COVID-19 Return to Work Site Safety Plans
  • Ongoing compliance and performance monitoring
  • Onsite occupational hygiene assessments and air sampling
  • MEP system audit
  • Retro-commissioning
  • HVAC system analysis, modeling and improvements
  • Space utilization analytics and sensor technology
  • Location mapping, wayfinding, gesture control, mobile RFID
  • Flex spaces and convertible rooms
  • Internet of things and smart buildings


Mobility Adaptation

Public transportation agencies are facing unprecedented challenges, including declining revenue, operator absenteeism, and new safety requirements for transit operators and riders, while continuing to provide critical access to essential work sites, food sources and medical treatment. Additionally, an unprecedented decline in air traffic has drastically impacted airport owners and operators. WSP provides strategies and tactical guidance to help transportation agencies, owners and operators respond to and recover from COVID-19, and inform future pandemic preparedness to safeguard operations, riders and employees.


  • Funding analysis and decision-making support
  • Development of mid-term and long-term recovery plans
  • Special operating service plans
  • Employee care, hazard pay policies and labor relations
  • PPE and cleaning supply tracking and management
  • Infectious disease control strategies
  • Continuity of operations planning
  • Facility and vehicle design for retrofits/new assets
  • Tolling/express lanes pricing strategies
  • Temporary parking plans and procedures for overflow aircraft


Flexible Healthcare

As medical facilities begin to look past the initial influx of COVID-19 patients, WSP is helping healthcare clients prepare for a potential second wave of the virus and related impacts while maintaining the regular flow of routine patient visits, surgeries and other procedures. WSP engineers are also working with healthcare facilities to understand how emergency room design will change in light of what we’ve learned from COVID-19 and how to turn temporary treatment spaces into permanent, code-compliant solutions for treating critical and non-critical patients.


  • Flexible isolation wings/floors and Intensive Care Units (ICUs)
  • Design strategies to stay operational during a mass response event
  • Next generation ER design
  • Telemedicine facilities and services
  • Full suite of engineering services for new and existing hospitals
  • Building technology and smart systems
  • Building commissioning, including Level-5 Critical Systems Testing
  • Building security and cybersecurity


Natural Disaster Preparedness, Responses and Recovery During a Pandemic

Coastal regions face increasingly intense hurricane seasons. Tornados, wildfires and flooding pose extreme threats to communities across the country. Federal, state and city agencies, in conjunction with health agencies and providers, must prepare for scenarios that allow for contagion management while advancing typical disaster preparedness. Leveraging deep experience managing both issues, we can help your team build customized plans to meet current requirements and account for concurrent crises.


  • Preparedness and planning consulting
  • Emergency response and recovery plans audit and updates, incorporating new pandemic guidance
  • Emergency commodities supply (generators/fueling, base camps, bottled water, on-site meals/heated meals, pumps, lighting, material handling equipment, ADA-compliant portalets and restroom trailers, satellite communication phones, etc.)


Science and Technology


High-Containment Laboratories

WSP provides specialized engineering and design services for some of the country’s most advanced high-containment biosafety level (BSL) 3 and 4 laboratory facilities.

Download Contact Les Gartner


  • Bio-containment design (BSL-4, 3Ag, 3, 2)
  • Biosecurity and biosafety consulting
  • Integrated systems engineering
  • Laboratory planning and equipment
  • Vivarium planning and equipment

COVID-19 Rapid Response

We are mobilizing our experts across the country to help our clients respond to the unique challenges posed by this pandemic. From advising our healthcare clients on the creation of isolation wings and temporary facilities to working on site at state and regional emergency operations centers, our team is proud to be providing critical support to help keep our communities healthy.

COVID-19 Rapid Response


Emergency Logistics and Supply

United States Postal Service (USPS) Emergency Services
As part of our contract to help maintain USPS operations in the face of disruptive emergency events, WSP has responded to multiple calls for disaster response services at sites across the country.

Florida Division of Emergency Management
We have supplied wrap-around services for the set up and provisioning of base camps and mobile urgent care facilities; procured and shipped field assessment site equipment and medical supplies; and delivered critical commodities.

Download Contact Christopher Walker

State-Level Emergency Response
In North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Delaware, New York, and Washington, D.C., WSP has been distributing a variety of essential medical supplies


  • Emergency operations management staffing and support
  • Turn-key set up of mobile urgent care facilities
  • Field assessment site equipment
  • Medical materials and equipment
  • Points of distribution and supply operations
  • Generators/power/fueling
  • Portalets, hand wash stations, laundry and rest room trailers
  • Commodities provisioning (water, ice, heated meals)
  • Satellite communications
  • Asset tracking and management


Healthcare Engineering

Build-Out, Conversion or Retrofit of Existing Space to Urgent Care
WSP offers rapid response engineering services to support conversion of existing facilities to temporary, modular healthcare facilities.

Application of H2HC & A2HC Concepts 
Using the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Hotel to Healthcare (H2HC) and Arena to Healthcare (A2HC) concepts as a foundation, our team is analyzing and researching, and rapidly prototyping facility design solutions.

Download Contact Nolan Rome


  • Facility/site assessment and selection for retrofit suitability
  • Engineering for isolation wings and temporary Intensive Care Units (ICUs)
  • Conversion of existing buildings to temporary, modular healthcare facilities
  • Mechanical/electrical/plumbing (MEP) for new and existing hospitals
  • Medical gas systems
  • Systems integration
  • Building technology systems
  • Building commissioning, including Level-5 Critical Systems Testing
  • Building security
  • Mass response design iteration


Environment, Health and Safety

WSP USA offers a broad range of technical, regulatory and management support services designed to assist our clients in addressing the complex and often complicated web of environmental, health and safety compliance requirements impacting business operations and transactions.

Download Contact Michael McKibben


  • Infectious disease decontamination and disinfection
  • Business/contingency plan updating and development
  • Emergency notification – internal and public
  • Regulatory support – new OSHA reportable requirements for COVID-19
  • Safety management systems
  • Remote video regulatory inspection and auditing
  • Personnel training and lessons learned


Crisis Communications


Communications Rapid Response

We have assembled an expert group of communications and visualization professionals who have experience in all types of crisis and strategic communications.

Download Contact Darrel Cole


  • Online Meeting Solutions and Support
  • Issues Management
  • Strategic Communications Plan Development
  • Crisis Communications Plan Development
  • Guidance on Best Practices
  • Brand Management and Messaging
  • Staffing Solutions
  • Visualization Solutions
  • Graphics and 3D Renderings

Learn more about how we can help:

Thought Leadership

Our teams are helping our clients implement immediate solutions to help slow the spread of the virus and respond to community needs. Learn more about what we’re doing:

Disaster Response on the Front Line

For decades, WSP USA has deployed logistics management and emergency response teams to help communities recover from natural and man-made disasters. Those teams are now adapting to serve the U.S. response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read More

Out of Pandemic, Resilience

Knowledge gained from the impact of, and resilience actions taken during, the COVID-19 pandemic could provide lasting lessons beyond health crises preparation, including future approaches to acute and chronic risks such as climate change.

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Adapting Existing Hospitals

WSP USA health care engineers are providing rapid assessments of existing systems and solutions that can be implemented quickly to meet the needs of hospitals and communities.

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Airport Parking Best Practices

WSP USA research recommends strategies for parking grounded aircraft during unprecedented air traffic decline.

Read More

Public Transportation

The impacts of COVID-19 on public transportation have been substantial and far reaching with devastating numbers of agency operators and staff diagnosed with the disease, including many fatalities.

Read more

A Message from Lou Cornell

Our Experts

Sofia Berger
Senior Vice President, Advisory Services
United States
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Darrel Cole
Vice President and Managing Director, Communications & Public Involvement Practice
United States
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Michael McKibben
Senior Vice President, Director of Environment
United States
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Vince Ricevuto
Senior Vice President, Federal Programs and Logistics
United States
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Nolan Rome
Senior Vice President, Director of Healthcare
United States
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Christopher Walker
Senior Vice President, Emergency Management
United States
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Les Gartner
Global Director, Science and Technology
United States
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