Michigan Mixed-Use Building Integration Enhanced With Partnership
A local integrator leveraged ASSA ABLOY Professional Services to fulfill the end user’s selection of SARGENT IN120 WiFi access control locks.
234 Market, a mixed-use commercial/residential building, is located in Grand Rapids, Mich.
GRANDVILLE, Mich. — Grand Valley Automation, located here, takes integration to the next level in terms of smart technologies, interoperable systems and simplicity for clients. The company is a prime example of the new era in security integration where systems are combined in a way that are not just automated, but nearly autonomous.
Cory Tate, security team leader at the company, says the approach is largely driven by the new demand of consumers who understand the true promise of integration.
“We look at security integration as full building integration,” Tate says. “Access control, HVAC, fire, security monitoring, you name it and we will not only do it but also tie it all together.”
The promise of smart technologies and the Internet of Things (IoT) has brought a demand for new security solutions that integrate beyond just security. That isn’t to say the security and safety of a building is pushed to the side; rather, these core systems are now used as cornerstones in the new era of security integration.
“We still install the quality doors and door hardware. But with new access control capabilities, we can really bring the systems together,” Tate says. “You use your Bluetooth credential on your phone to access a building after hours and the security camera picks you up. The system now knows you’re in the building. The lights come on where you need them to be on. The temperature may adjust depending on the weather and your location. The building may be tracking your Bluetooth signal so it can adapt to your needs in real time.”
Furthermore, Tate explains, with the building’s knowledge of who you are and where you are, if there is an emergency it can report to first responders who is in the building. “This goes down to the little details — like checking the pressure in fire extinguishers — but the result is that when all systems work together you have a safer and more secure facility. All of that begins with making sure your access control points and credentials are technologically advanced and work with your other systems,” he says.
Installation and setup of these network devices can be cumbersome in the field. Ensuring that multiple building systems are interoperable is critical for the system to work as intended. Further, it is important to help the new users understand the operation of the technologies — and that learning curve can be steep at first approach.
ASSA ABLOY Professional Services sends applications engineers to project sites to help both design and deploy systems within these complex environments. The service includes product selection and system design, as well as testing of multiple systems.
“ASSA ABLOY Professional Services are designed to support certified integrators on IP-enabled deployments using WiFi and Power-over-Ethernet locks,” says Spiros Pantazis, an applications engineer for ASSA ABLOY. “We help undertake tasks such as determining wireless encryption and authentication methods, validating credential selection, and middleware deployment and testing.”
Approaching the process in this way ensures network communications, credential migration, and interoperability concerns are sorted out well before the installation begins. The result: reduced risk, time and cost in all deployments — no matter how complex or remote.
Of course, the service also means implementing some of the most sophisticated and impressive integrations available on the market today. One example: 234 Market, a mixed-use commercial/residential building in Grand Rapids, Mich., situated in the city’s quickly developing Central Business District.
The five-story building with 235 apartment units, four live/work units and 30,000 square feet of retail and office space opened in July and is one of the most technologically advanced buildings in the region.
Working with Tate at Grand Valley Automation, the Maplegrove Property Management team, the group overseeing 234 Market, made the choice to use the versatile SARGENT IN120 WiFi access control locks, which support multiple credential technologies.
Tate also offered ASSA ABLOY IP Professional Services to the property management team, pitching it as a type of insurance that all would go according to plan with the deployment.
“One worry that all integrators have is that you’ll have something not work very well and then the excitement is lost,” Tate says. “For me, I want to make sure that never happens. I don’t want anything to ever look bad, especially when I know it is a quality product. Using Professional Services, you get a system that works right from moment one.”
With the 234 Market project, the ASSA ABLOY Professional Services team reviewed all plans and system designs before deployment, helped write database queries between third-party building management systems, and went out to the site for three days to ensure all the devices were working correctly both on the network and with other systems.
The result: a quality integration that worked correctly the first time.
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