The BB&T Center, home of the Florida Panthers, became the first NHL arena to achieve the International WELL Building Institute’s WELL health-safety rating for facility operations and management.
The facility was recognized Monday by Green Business Certification Inc. for an adherence to guidelines and protocols set by the IWBI to battle COVID-19 and preparedness to safely accommodate fans upon reopening.
“The health and safety of our BB&T Center family, guests and community is the single most important thing as we look towards reopening our doors,” Panthers chief operating officer Sean McCaffrey said. “Achieving the WELL health-safety rating, which serves as the global benchmark for best operating procedures to help combat COVID-19, is a testament to our team’s tireless efforts, led by BB&T Center general manager Tom Embrey, to ensure the safest possible environment for our guests, players and employees when we reopen.”
An official start date for the 2020-21 NHL season has not yet been announced.
The Panthers and BB&T Center were lauded for accomplishments in five areas focusing on operational policies, cleaning and maintenance protocols, design strategies, stakeholder engagement and emergency preparedness in the wake of COVID-19: Air and water quality management, cleaning and sanitation procedures, emergency preparedness programs, health service resources, and stakeholder engagement and communication.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored how critically important it is to prioritize health and safety in the spaces where we gather,” said Rachel Hodgdon, President and CEO of WELL. “By achieving the WELL health-safety rating, the Florida Panthers and BB&T Center have demonstrated incredible leadership in directly supporting the health, safety and overall well-being of players, fans, employees and their broader community.”