German study: Concert halls are safe when half-fullmain
A pioneering study conducted for the Dortmund Konzerthaus shows an encouragingly low risk of corona infection inside concert halls.
In November 2020, extensive measurements were made in the auditorium and the foyer of the concert hall. The evaluations of the experimental investigations show that, especially in the hall, under the given conditions, the risk of spreading infections through aerosol transmission can almost be ruled out. Above all, the existing central ventilation system and the wearing of mouth and nose protection reduce the aerosol and CO2 pollution significantly, so that theoretically full occupancy in the hall would be conceivable.
However, taking into account the access routes and foyers, it is recommended that the hall be occupied in a chessboard pattern and thus 50% of the hall capacity. In addition to concrete results for a visit to the Dortmund Concert Hall, the study can also provide information for other concert halls or theaters of a similar size.
NRW Minister of Culture and Science Isabel Pfeiffer-Poensgen said: “The issue of ventilation is a decisive factor for the reopening of cultural institutions. The study by the Dortmund Concert Hall is therefore a valuable component in the effort to enable music to be played even in times of pandemic. … It is painful that the still high number of infections does not currently allow reopening. It is all the more important to create perspectives and planning security for the time after the lockdown.’
photo: Simeon Klein