Goodbye PJs, howdy enterprise relaxed

When I started out performing political cartoons for the Times in 2018, I identified just one of the facet benefits of the career was the opportunity to depart the newsroom and go for a stroll amongst the legions of Amazon employees who labored in numerous of the bordering properties. All all those ethnically various, mainly youthful people mingling on the streets at lunch hour created downtown sense alive and cosmopolitan.

Then the COVID-19 pandemic strike and pretty much everyone toiling absent in South Lake Union’s ranks of place of work towers, like us newspaper individuals, retreated property to operate remotely. We know what transpired then Seattle’s urban main grew to become a ghost city. Graffiti proliferated, crime shot up, dining establishments, film theaters and other firms struggled, and lots of closed their doors for good.

Our when vivid downtown however has not bounced all the way back. People have mainly returned, now showing up at 93% of pre-pandemic amounts. On an city tour over Presidents Day weekend, I encountered crowds of people savoring Seattle Centre, packing the monorail and traipsing as a result of Westlake Heart. Nevertheless, on weekdays, 1000’s of place of work workers are still absent.

Which is about to modify. Amazon has announced that employees will soon be expected to expend at minimum three days a 7 days in the office environment. Top rated managers say the company tradition they want to rebuild needs genuine facial area-to-deal with make contact with, not just a bunch of faces on a Zoom contact.

Not every person is thrilled about this, of study course. Lots of Amazon personnel are delighted to be liberated from extended commutes. They like performing their jobs at property and declare to be more economical with out the interruptions and interruptions of a active office. The most informal Amazonians will miss out on functioning in their pajamas (or at minimum the decreased 50 percent that does not display up on a video convention phone).

There are excellent arguments for working from house, as properly as reliable reasons to favor the collaborative chances of an place of work. That discussion will go on. One particular matter is tough to dispute, although: Seattle’s downtown is only nutritious when there are thousands of occupied people today bustling alongside the metropolis streets.

See additional of David Horsey’s cartoons at: st.information/davidhorsey

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