Proposal for ‘Container Pods’ for Staff Accommodation by WEF Forced by Swelling Davos Crowds

As a solution to the growing accommodation crunch, the organizers of the World Economic Forum are being forced to consider housing some staff in temporary ‘container pods’ due to the rising crowds descending on the event’s annual summit in Davos each year.

Yann Zopf, a spokesman for the non-profit organization was quoted by the media saying that the pre-fabricated modular units are indeed being considered as one of several options for World Economic Forum (WEF) employees as of 2018.

However, earlier attempts by the media to characterize the pods as akin to transportation boxes stretch reality, according to Zopf.

“They are not containers actually and even less ‘shipping containers’ as some wrote but temporary wood structures like these,” explained Zopf, indicating products constructed by Uffer as an example.

although the pressure on supply is continuously augmented by an approximately 10 percent increase in WEF employees each year, at the 2017 conference, as in prior years, staff would be housed in apartments, Zopf said. Some WEF employees would be attending the summit.

With just a permanent population of around 11,000 residents counted in 2015, the tiny Swiss mountain town of Davos – which carries the distinction of being the highest ‘town’ in Europe at 5,120 feet of altitude.

While the continually growing numbers of people flocking to the elite WEF gathering each year is in stark contrast to the decade-long decline in population experienced by the town.

The total crowd in Davos is expected to burgeon to around 30,000 this year, in line with 2016’s numbers, in addition to the more than 2,500 participants expected this year – a sharp rise from the 444 who attended the first meet in 1971. That number includes those hoping to hobnob with the world’s one percent and other attendees including entourages, media and technical teams.

Equating to numbers around five times higher than in a regular week at Davos, according to a spokesperson, online homestay marketplace Airbnb is anticipating welcoming double the amount of guests at this year’s conference compared to last year.

Indeed, in terms of both volume and price levels, comparisons with regular weeks in the prestigious resort are staggering.

Only one single room was shown to be available in the entire Davos ski resort as of the Thursday prior to the conference kick-off the following Tuesday.

One would have to pay £1,822 ($2,215) for the duration of the three-night conference for the booking the non-refundable “budget single room” which offers a twin bed, shared bathroom and kitchen and less than 200 square foot of space.

However, only a notably more gentle £158 dint in your wallet would be put by the same abode during the following week’s Tuesday to Friday period.

(Adapted from CNBC)


Categories: Economy & Finance, Strategy

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