Various discussions have emerged about theatres opening with reduced capacity to allow for social distancing, and what kind of seating plan patterns best support this.
We think that because people who are isolating together - family members in the same household - can safely sit next to each other, the best approach is not to block out every other row and every other seat in a fixed pattern, but to allow people to book groups to seats together off the plan as normal, and then create a “buffer zone” around those seats, blocking them off and preventing anyone else from booking them.
In this screenshot someone in another session has booked seats C14 and C15, and so C13, C16, B13-B16 and D13-D16 are all unavailable.
We can book C11 and C12.
The size of the buffer zone will be configurable. In the first version it is based on a simple distance metric on the seating plan, but has been designed so that it can easily be enhanced later - with more sophisticated control, or even manual editing.