News & Articles

COVID-19 Impact on Construction and Development in Washington

Published on April 14, 2020, Updated on May 1, 2020

On March 23, 2020, Governor Inslee issued his Stay Home, Stay Healthy Proclamation 20-05, generally directing all residents to immediately stay home. On March 25, 2020, Governor Inslee issued an exception to Proclamation 20-05 called the Construction Guidance Proclamation 20-25, allowing certain construction and development work to continue in limited circumstances. The Governor’s Proclamations 20-05 and 20-25 have now been extended until May 31, 2020.

Under the Construction Guidance, construction is now allowed to continue for certain projects including:

  • Projects for Essential activities
  • Projects furthering public purposes related to public entities, governmental functions or facilities, or publicly financed low-income housing
  • Construction activity aimed at preventing spoilage, damage, or unsafe conditions
  • Emergency repairs for non-essential businesses and residential buildings.

Any construction or development activity, regardless of its nature, must comply with social distancing guidelines and all health and worker protection must be in place before any activity may proceed.

Many owners and contractors may be wondering if their projects qualify under the exemptions listed above.

In order to confirm status, Washington has created an online form that allows users to either request that a project be included in the exemptions or to clarify the project’s status as an essential business or other permitted construction activity. As of now, turnaround time appears to be approximately two weeks.

If you are working in construction or development and wish to further understand your right to continue work, the health obligations required of you, or be advised about any other matter, please contact any member of our Real Estate, Development & Finance group at Ryan Swanson.





Allie Sisson is an attorney in Ryan Swanson’s Real Estate, Development & Finance Group and can be reached at [email protected].


This webpage is provided for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.

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