JHU campus operations update

March 23, 2020

Dear Johns Hopkins University Community:

As the days of facing the COVID-19 pandemic turn into weeks, we want to assure you of the essential work being done to maintain critical campus operations. We are appreciative of your patience, flexibility, and understanding as we all navigate this rapidly evolving situation, and we extend special gratitude to our colleagues at Johns Hopkins Medicine for their selfless and tireless work taking care of patients.

We are pleased with the progress and cooperation to date in helping us minimize the number of people on our other campuses by quickly adjusting to telework to the greatest extent possible, as well as to remote learning. The smaller our numbers, the more we limit potential exposures and ease the burden on health care resources that will no doubt be stretched as the impacts of COVID-19 take a firmer grip.

As of March 23, 2020, at 5 p.m., further restrictions for Maryland go into effect per an order from Gov. Hogan. At this time, there is not a shelter-in-place order for Maryland, but nonessential businesses have been ordered to close. We have already implemented plans for maintaining crucial university operations under current and potential future restrictions. The steps we have already taken in accordance with the best public health guidance have put us in a strong readiness position. Information on university operations is updated regularly on the Hub COVID-19 information page.

In keeping with the guidance of public health officials, we are maintaining essential functions on our campuses under the following parameters:

Access to all campus buildings is restricted. All buildings are locked and require key card swipes for entry or will have a staffed on-site security station.

  • Any faculty member, staff, trainee, graduate student, or postdoc who believes they need building access must be essential and must have access approved by a representative from their dean’s office, department head, and/or appropriate university administrator.
  • Any personnel with questions about their on-campus attendance status should contact their immediate manager for clarity.

Any undergraduates who have been granted a rare exception to remain on campus will be able to access only their assigned residence hall, dining facility, and Wolman (to retrieve mail). Access to any other campus building is prohibited.

Facility maintenance and custodial services have been realigned to operate with the minimum number of staff at any given time to perform necessary duties. Facility managers will schedule and rotate staff at minimal levels to maximize adherence to public health guidelines.

Security levels will be maintained and/or elevated at all campuses during this period of restricted access and limited campus activity. Campus Safety and Security will remain in operation 24 hours a day. In an emergency, contact 410-516-7777 or dial 911. For non-emergencies, call 410-516-4600.

Essential transportation services, including Lyft and the Blue Jay Shuttle, continue with adjusted schedules to meet reduced demand. Occupancy guidelines have been updated to ensure appropriate physical distancing. We are also exploring additional transportation options in the event public transportation operations become further curtailed.

We are proceeding with construction activity that is currently in progress, in conformance with state guidance. This work will be performed with close attention to the health and safety of contractors and crews, who have developed specific plans to follow CDC, state, and local guidelines for physical distancing and health protection. Projects in progress will be reevaluated on a regular basis for health and safety assurance and financial viability. At this time we are deferring the start of all but specifically approved new projects.

During this period of restricted access and reduced campus operations, essential supply chain services will continue, including mail and package delivery and critical supplies. Specific details have been coordinated at the campus level.

We will continue to monitor the situation closely and communicate with you regarding any significant changes that may be required, including potentially tighter restrictions to reflect future public health guidance or government orders.

We recognize the uncertainty and anxiety that come with such an unprecedented global health emergency, and truly value all that you are doing to help keep our campuses and communities operating as safely as possible. Please take good care of yourselves, your families, and neighbors as we all navigate this situation together.


Bob McLean
Vice President for Facilities and Real Estate

Jon Links
Vice Provost and Chief Risk Officer
Professor, Public Health, Medicine, Education, Engineering, and Business