Integrator DockCom Technology Services has installed an ICT access control solution with LPR vehicle access at Yarra’s Edge, a premium residential and lifestyle precinct on the riverside next to Melbourne’s CBD.

The development began more than 20 years ago and is now home to more than 3000 residents, 21 retail spaces, and a marina facility, all linked to the CBD by Webb Bridge.

The security solution at Yarra’s Edge Towers 2 and 3, comprising a total of 51 floors and 300 apartments, was a mess. Creaking infrastructure that was outdated, security breaches due to cloned keycards, and a failing access control system that was no longer supported – these were some of the issues faced by management as it searched for a solution to bring the buildings back to a useable state.

Because of the issues, residents were seeing increased maintenance costs due to recurring system failures, while building managers found performing day to day tasks cumbersome and time-consuming. There was a loss of control over access to the complex. Easily cloned cards meant a number of unauthorized credentials were in circulation. Another area of concern was the carpark, where access was becoming increasingly unsecure.

Yarra’s Edge Owners Corporation approached integrators DockCom, and the DockCom team recommended a unified solution from ICT to help management regain control. Mark Stytsenko, DockCom’s technical director, believed the “superior quality of ICT products and complexity made-simple approach with the Protege GX software would deliver the reliability and security on a large scale” lacking at Yarra’s Edge.

The flexible, modular design of Protege GX provides access control, intrusion detection and building automation across multiple buildings. Combined with ICT’s tSec card readers, it enables scheduled access, elevator control, and delivers a one-card solution across the entire site. The user-friendly interface, with simple status pages and reporting functions, provides building managers with real-time insights that can be quickly actioned should any security issues arise.

“Changes during the project preparation phase meant that encryption standards for encoding the access cards needed to be updated,” Stytsenko said. “Working with ICT allows us to provide the latest high-security DESFire cards, and ensures that the client has the latest and most secure solution.”

By installing license plate recognition at the entrance and integrating with Protege GX, vehicles without an authorized license plate can no longer gain access. Registered vehicles now have automatic entry without needing to present a credential, providing added convenience for residents.

Access was also made easier for residents using ICT’s modern tSec readers, which blend seamlessly with the decor. Bluetooth functionality enables the use of touchfree ICT mobile credentials on smartphones, removing the need to carry an additional keycard.

As well as automatic license plate recognition, there also touch-free Bluetooth access to the complex, and building managers can react in an informed and timely manner when security issues arise, thanks to improved information provided by the Protege GX interface.

Installation and changeover of a live, large complex can pose challenges, but with careful preparation by DockCom and the simple modular design of ICT’s solution, the project was successfully commissioned in just 2 weeks.

“Since commissioning, there has been unprecedented reliability with no faults or downtime,” Stytsenko said. “Working with ICT has been an exceptional experience and Protege’s well thought through modular design meant we could deliver the project on time, on budget, and to the full satisfaction of our client.”

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