ProdataKey and Altronix Future-Proof Premium Office Tower for Tenants
Fairbourne Station is a new, 40-acre, mixed-use development in West Valley City, Utah, that combines residential units, retail space, a hotel, and Fairbourne Office Tower, a nine-story commercial building with an adjacent parking structure. This office tower is also the new headquarters for Wasatch Property Management (WPM), the residential division of Wasatch Commercial Management (WCM), which happens to be one of the premiere, commercial real-estate developers in the Mountain West.
Ultimately, WPM will share the property with a full roster of tenants.
New office buildings need security on Day One. However, securing a building that still contains several vacant floors and office suites, as well as a reduced on-site workforce due to the pandemic, is far different from securing a bustling, commercial office tower.
That difference in needs is what spurred Salt Lake City’s Summit Technology to work closely with Joanne Marshall, WCM’s property manager for Fairbourne Office Tower, to design and install an access control solution. This solution met both the property’s immediate needs and the evolving demands that will surely arise as more tenants move in.
The Right Team, The Right Solution
Summit Technology, an IT solutions provider, describes itself as “not your typical security integrator, MSP, or VAR.” Serving as a curated technology partner to its clients, the company seeks to bring expertise and creative, outside-the-box thinking to its customers’ complex business challenges.
Val Reynolds, Summit Technology’s vice president of Infrastructure and ISP, explains that it was his team that designed and installed the pdk io access control system:
"As a technology company, we do a lot of different things really well, and pdk is one of them. We understood from the get-go that this was a project we’d need to install in phases. Right now, we’ve deployed a solution that’s just a fragment of what we can ultimately build out for the entire complex."
There were several reasons that the pdk solution was an obvious choice for the Fairbourne Office Tower, according to Joanne:
We wanted a system where if someone got locked out of the building, I could unlock the door for them from my phone. You wouldn’t need an access card. It also needed to be easy to use. In addition to my other responsibilities as the property manager, I’m actually the one issuing cards and managing the system.
Jeffrey Blumel, Summit Technology’s installing technician, adds, “The pdk io system offers Bluetooth readers that are especially popular since COVID. As long as you have your phone with you in your pocket, you can just wave your hand in front of the reader and the door unlocks. You don’t even have to touch it.“ This ability would be a strong selling point for new tenants.
Also, in the minds of WCM’s decision makers, pdk and Summit Technology already had a proven track record. Summit Technology has installed pdk io systems in several of WCM’s other properties. There was a comfort level both with the technology and with the team supporting the implementation.
Planning for Possibilities: Flexibility
Summit Technology began the project by installing a Grid Fiber system throughout the building, creating a super-fast, high-bandwidth infrastructure ready to deliver fiber connectivity from the rooftop to the basement.
“We needed the ability to install controlled access points anywhere and everywhere, including the elevators, stairwells, closets, restrooms, and within individual office suites,” says Val. “We were planning for possibilities, laying the groundwork so that future system expansion would be simple and cost effective.”
The initial installation included approximately 122 devices, including the lobby, all five elevators, electrical and storage closets, stairwells, and WCM’s office space. Throughout the building, all readers are pdk's touch io Bluetooth-compatible devices with touch-free capability. The readers also support traditional proximity (“prox”) cards, which some employees prefer to use.
“Many of WCM’s employees previously worked at other buildings that used a pdk system, and we were able to transfer their cards over to work with the system here,” says Joanne.
Chris Dearing, Summit Technology’s Physical Security engineer, says that Altronix Trove enclosures with integrated power helped simplify installation, while keeping the system’s extensive wiring neat and organized within the electrical rooms. “Because a single Trove enclosure can accommodate up to three multi-door controllers and a power supply, we could consolidate all of our wiring and power right there. This was particularly helpful when dealing with the elevators that each open to so many floors.”
Jeff Blumel adds, “The fact that the Trove unit can hold either a 12-volt or 24-volt power supply gave us the flexibility to go with 24 volts where needed, running power over much longer distances using half the wire gauge. It was good to have that versatility.”
Up and Running: Partitioning
With phase one of the installation now fully operational, Joanne is tasked with managing the system. “I’m responsible for adding employees, making changes to schedules, and things like that,” she says. “Because it’s on the cloud, I have access to it after hours from wherever I am. If someone gets locked out, they give me a call and I can remotely let them in. It’s really nice.” Mastering the system required minimal effort, she adds: “I received training on a few things, like how to add new groups and put doors on a holiday schedule. If I need help, I can always reach out to Chris [of Summit Technology].”
One pdk io feature that Joanne looks forward to using as tenants move in is partitioning.
Partitioning allows tenants to create and delete users and assign permissions to doors within their own suites, while those tenants’ (or employees’) credentials also work within the common areas of the building that are under Joanne's control. She says, “I expect that we’ll ultimately have some large tenants in this building with a lot of employees. That would mean adding and deleting users constantly. It would be very helpful for the companies' own HR team to be able to handle that without involving me. It would also allow them to take control of things like locking their suite's main door if they're all away at lunch or in a meeting."
Partitioning is also convenient for employees who work in the building. With just one credential to get in the main doors, the parking garage, and their suite, there's no need to carry around keys or a separate access card.
As tenants move in, Summit Technology will be able to add controlled access points at any time without interfering with the existing system's operation because of pdk’s “edge-style” system, which makes installation much easier and less disruptive. As soon as readers are installed and configured, new doors will automatically appear within Joanne's pdk io app and she can assign them to a partition.
Mobile First Means Convenience First
Pdk io’s mobile-first platform was proof-positive that the solution met WCM’s need for the latest technology. As previously mentioned, all readers throughout the building are Bluetooth enabled, meaning that tenants with mobile credentials on their smartphones can unlock doors and access elevator floors with a wave of their hands in front of the reader or by holding their locked phone within its proximity.
Pdk’s mobile-first approach extends beyond mobile credentialing. For technicians, it simplifies installation, testing, and configuration. Jeff explains, “When I’m diagnosing something, I can do everything right from my phone. It makes everything a lot more fluid.”
Chris goes even further:
“It really helps troubleshooting. If Jeff’s trying to see whether each element is working, like a motion sensor, a push button, or a card reader, he can test them and watch live on his phone what’s going on at the door. He doesn’t have to be running back to a computer or trying to balance a laptop in one hand while he fiddles with stuff. It also helps when I’m working remotely with Joanne. If she’s got a question, we can both pull up the system at the same time, see the exact same thing on our phones or computers, and then I can walk her through, step-by-step. I also find it very helpful to have the option to use the system across devices. Sometimes I want to manage things from my desk, pulling up multiple screens simultaneously, and having that flexibility is amazing.”
Progress as Promised
“We’ve worked with Summit Technology for years and are lucky to have the relationship that we do,” says Joanne. “Things go much smoother because we have such strong communication, back and forth. The same holds true for Summit Technology’s relationship with pdk. Whatever needs to get done, they know how to make it happen.”
The motto for West Valley City is “Progress as Promised!” There’s no question that Summit Technology’s installation of a pdk io access control solution within the city’s newest premium office tower delivers progress in the form of the most convenient, state-of-the-art security, ready to handle today’s challenges and tomorrow’s possibilities.
Pdk is a team of security integrators with decades of hands-on, in-the-field experience. Pdk believes that the best technology is created by professionals who know what it takes to secure a facility properly and provide the end-user with a solution that instills confidence and safety.
Pdk is passionate about creating technology to enhance the security, safety, and overall experience of both the professionals installing electronic access control and those that live with and use the system. Pdk continues to create technology every day to enhance its products and the products of its technology partners.