The client:

The Eden Shopping Centre in High Wycombe provides one of the most exciting retail and leisure destinations in the UK.

It contains an array of big name shops, a 12-screen cinema, bowling alley, library and exclusive restaurants. It provides secure car parking for 1580 cars and a brand new bus station for the town.

The situation:

The Eden Shopping Centre opened in March 2008 and now welcomes up to 0.5 million shoppers every week. It comprises five separate buildings linked together with ETFE-covered walkways and encompasses the previous and newly renovated ‘Octagon' shopping centre.

To find the security solution that would suit their needs, Brookfield Construction (UK) Ltd undertook a tender process to select a preferred supplier.

The system specification demanded an easy-to-use integrated solution that could provide discreet surveillance in this prestigious shopping centre. A state-of-the-art integrated access control and digital CCTV solution would provide video surveillance to all main public walkways, the multi-storey car parks, service yard areas and a new bus station. It would be possible to centrally manage door access throughout allowing a more efficient, manageable but secure process for staff access to all authorised areas.

In addition, there are several communal residential front door areas for private housing association apartments that are adjacent to the shopping centre. The surveillance and door access management would need to control these as well.

As the ETFE roof is an integral part of the shopping centre architecture, sunlight can make it difficult to capture clear images. These areas needed to be monitored by cameras that can produce sharp, colour-saturated images even in extreme back-lit conditions.

Finally, it was important that the design of the CCTV domes complemented the shopping centre's contemporary style providing effective but aesthetic monitoring.

In parallel, the surveillance system used by the Octagon shopping centre was aged and in need of modernisation. When considering the renovation and integration of the CCTV in this area, one of the biggest challenges to overcome was how to switch the security surveillance operation from the existing, old control centre to the new purpose-built function with minimum downtime whilst refurbishing the existing cameras.

The solution:

In conjuntion with Imtech Meica (the electrical sub-contrator), Total Security Protection (TSP) designed the system to provide a comprehensive solution that was within the budget. Having met with TSP, Brookfield felt confident in the company's skill and its ability to meet the project requirements and the strict deadline.

TSP recommended a Honeywell Security integrated systems solution as it offered the best match to the shopping centre's requirements. The system consists of a WIN-PAK™ Access Control system with PW5000 controllers, approximately 30 OmniClass™ readers which enable integration with the 200+ CCTV cameras, the Fusion Digital Video Recorder (DVR), Fusion Video Management System (FVMS), MaxPro matrix and Honeywell monitors to provide the control room video wall.

Using this software and hardware from Honeywell, the Eden Shopping Centre now has a state-of-the-art, cost-effective and user-friendly security solution that ensures the safety of staff, visitors and premises, while managing the movements of its staff.

 Covering the perimeter of the centre, Orbiter dome cameras have been positioned high up on poles. Images from these cameras are also used to link to the residential
 A purpose-built security control room has been commissioned with images displayed on a bank of Plasma screens

 

In areas of high contrast light conditions, such as in the bus station and service yard area, the Honeywell HCU484X  wide dynamic camera was installed. The technology in this camera ensures excellent image detail in light and dark areas of a high contrast scene. Honeywell Orbiter PTZ cameras, vandal resistant mini domes and day / night box cameras (all with NVT built into the heads) were also installed to provide optimum surveillance angles - so that no area was left uncovered.

Perfect picture quality is achieved by advanced auto focus control to ensure that, no matter what the zoom position, the picture is in the sharpest-possible focus. A number of programmable camera ‘tours' encompassing pan, tilt and zoom sweeps of key areas in and around the shopping centre can be created using Honeywell equipment.

Covering the perimeter of the centre, Orbiter dome cameras have been positioned high up on poles. Images from these cameras are also used to link to the residential area. When the entry intercom is pressed, the image of the scene is displayed in the security control room.

All Orbiters are connected via a MaxPro (HMX32128) matrix with images recorded and stored on 14 Fusion III 16 channel DVRs, each with real time live display, thus enabling a quick reaction time when needed.

"We now have an affordable, sophisticated security solution that meets our needs now and one that is flexible enough to expand and meet our needs in the future," says Daniel Tomkinson, Centre Director, of Eden Shopping Centre.

Using the FVMS Management Software, security staff are in total control of the information being relayed via the system and can use relevant features of FVMS including; importing of maps, monitoring live video, monitoring alarms, exporting saved video and simple user management to pinpoint areas and activities of concern. In addition, 12 of the cameras are linked to the Wycombe District Council CCTV control room via a fibre-optic link. Robin Bennett, Security Manager at the Eden Shopping Centre comments, "In the event of an incident, images can be retrieved with ease, capturing the incident from all angles. It is intuitive, very easy to operate and is by far the best system I have worked with. The way in which the access control is integrated with the CCTV is excellent."

Access to all ‘non-public' door entrances is managed by the WIN-PAK system, PW5000 controllers and OmniClass readers. Any emergency exit doors are alarmed and are connected to cameras so that, in the event of a trigger, an alarm notification appears on the WIN-PAK control screen, enabling security staff to identify the location of the alarm and view live images from the camera monitoring that area via the Fusion DVR.

A new purpose-built security control room has been commissioned with camera images displayed on a bank of 42" Plasma screens and Honeywell 17" TFT monitors. In front of it, operators use Max-1000 keyboards and GUI interface to easily manage the operation.

The project was carried out under exceptionally strict and tight deadlines, demanding the highest flexibility from TSP. TSP completed the implementation and commissioning of the system on time and on budget and when security staff came into the shopping centre, TSP representatives were on-hand to ensure everything ran smoothly as well as providing training.

With commissioning complete, it was time to switch over the surveillance from the legacy system in the Octagon centre to the new system. Daniel Tomkinson, Eden Shopping Centre Director comments, "The transition from the legacy system to the new integrated system was seamless. Whilst the construction was taking place, the security system in the Octagon needed to be refurbished live. TSP made it look very simple."

Malcolm Baron of Brookfield Construction adds: "TSP's experience was invaluable during the design and planning stage. They met our brief precisely."

 
 The system specification demanded an easy-to-use integrated solution that could provide discreet surveillance in this prestigious shopping centre
 Covering the perimeter of the centre, Orbiter dome cameras have been positioned high up on poles

The Benefits:

Whilst the Eden Shopping Centre's requirement was to have a cost-effective and reliable system, the additional benefits have been enormous, including reduced crime and improved customer service.

There is a high physical presence of CCTV cameras throughout which acts as a deterrent. However, when there is a need to supply evidence in order to catch shoplifters or search for suspicious activity, this can be done quickly and effectively. This is achieved via the easy to use ‘search and retrieve' facilities on the Honeywell Fusion DVRs and FVMS.

The result is that the in-store security teams are confident that any criminal activity can continue to be recorded outside of their store; resulting in reduced crime and a safer shopping experience for customers.

The comprehensive CCTV system also helps the Eden Shopping Centre offer a ‘Child Friendly' scheme to its customers. Should a child appear lost, CCTV is used to quickly locate the child and shopping centre customer service staff are alerted and take care of the child until he/she is reunited with its parent.

Via the integration of the access control with the CCTV, unauthorised door access has been eliminated and alarm events such as fire door opening can be responded to quickly and precisely.

Daniel Tomkinson, Centre Director, Eden Shopping Centre, expressed confidence in the system, "We now have an affordable, sophisticated security solution that meets our needs now and one that is flexible enough to expand and meet our needs in the future."

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In case you missed it

What change would you like to see in security in 2022?
What change would you like to see in security in 2022?

Here’s a news flash: 2022 will be a pivotal year for the security industry. As we enter the new year, continuing change is a safe prediction for any fast-moving, technology-driven marketplace. Recent history confirms the ability of the security industry to shift and adapt to changing conditions and to provide an ever-expanding menu of technology solutions to make the world a safer place. Given that the new year will bring change, what will that change encompass? More to the point, what should it encompass? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What is the biggest change you would like to see within the security industry in 2022?

2021’s most popular expert panel roundtable discussions
2021’s most popular expert panel roundtable discussions

Topics that dominated our website’s Expert Panel Roundtable articles in 2021 included the effects of COVID-19, the benefits of mobile access, the upcoming potential of deep learning, and the future of access control cards. Our website’s Expert Panel Roundtable discussions in 2021 reflected some of the most timely and important topics in the industry. The very most clicked-on Expert Panel Roundtable discussion in 2021 considered the positive and negative effects of COVID-19. The second most popular was trends in perimeter security technology. Smart video solutions Here is a roundup of the Top 10 Expert Panel Roundtable discussions posted in 2021, along with a ‘sound bite’ from each discussion and links back to the full articles. Thanks to everyone who contributed to Expert Panel Roundtable in 2021 (including the quotable panelists named and linked below). The pandemic has impacted security in many ways, some we are just now realising" What are the positive and negative effects of COVID-19 to security? “The pandemic has impacted security in many ways, some we are just now realising. On the negative side, integrators were limited in their ability to access customer locations, posing significant challenges to supporting customers. Innovation was also halted in many sectors – such as AI and edge computing in healthcare. However, the pandemic increased awareness regarding the need for smart solutions that can aid in these types of crises. Smart video solutions have been identified repeatedly in the media as a potential pathway to better customer experience and increased safety.” – Alexander Harlass. Reducing false alarms What are the latest trends in perimeter security technology? “What’s really important in perimeter security is the minimisation of false alarms, not simply the potential detection of what might be an unauthorised person or object. In light of that, many systems now include alarm validation that can confirm an alarm event using a camera. The utilisation of AI-based technologies can further validate the accuracy of the alarm, making it as accurate and precise as possible. I anticipate seeing more cross-technological integrations to reduce false alarms, so that personnel in an alarm center spend as little time as possible in validating an alarm.” – Leo Levit. What will be the biggest security trends in 2021? “2021 will see artificial intelligence (AI) become more mainstream. There will be increased deployment in edge devices, including cameras, thermographic cameras, radar and LIDAR sensors, entry point readers, etc. Additional algorithms will be developed, greatly expanding the use and function as video surveillance transitions from a forensic tool to real-time analytics. This increases the value of these systems and helps create ROI cases for their deployment.” – Tim Brooks. Access control solutions Investments in tools and platforms to drive digital interactions have accelerated" What will be the security industry’s biggest challenge in 2021? “The security industry is traditional in the sense that it relies heavily on face-to-face interaction to do business with customers and partners alike. COVID-19 has put a hold on in-person meetings, trade shows, etc., and this trend is likely to extend throughout 2021. Virtually recreating these personal touchpoints, while cultivating and strengthening internal and external relationships, will continue to be both a challenge and opportunity for the security industry. Investments in tools and platforms to drive digital interactions have accelerated.” – Robert Moore. What are the challenges and benefits of mobile access control? “Mobile access control solutions are an exciting innovation in a market where the day-to-day user experience hasn’t changed much in the last 20 years. One area that has clear benefits and challenges is in improving the user experience. On one hand, physical credentials are expensive and a hassle to administer; however, they work reliably, quickly, and predictably. Mobile credentials are convenient in that everyone already has a smartphone, and you don’t have to admin or carry cards; however, when you’re actually standing at the door they need to work as well or better than physical credentials, or the benefits are lost.” – Brian Lohse. Attacking critical infrastructure What are the security challenges of protecting critical infrastructure? “It seems so often we hear about a new threat or cyber-attack in the news. Because of the rapid growth in technology over the last few years, cybercriminals are getting bolder and discovering new ways to attack critical infrastructure. One of the biggest challenges boils down to the capabilities of the operating security system and whether the organisation is aware of the current risks they face. Because there are so many points of entry for cybercriminals to target within critical infrastructure, it is vital that the security solution be prepared for attacks at every level.” – Charles (Chuck) O’Leary. They are more aware when they make physical contact with doors and interfaces" Which security technologies will be useful in a post-pandemic world? “People have become more sensitised to crowds and personal space. They are more aware when they make physical contact with doors and interfaces. As the pandemic subsides, these habits will likely remain for a majority of people." "Utilising AI-based cameras to accurately monitor the number of people in a room or in a queue will enable staff to take action to improve the customer experience. For example, AI-based analytics can quickly notify security or operations when people are waiting at a door and initiate 2-way audio for touchless access.” – Aaron Saks. Central monitoring station What is the potential of deep learning in physical security and surveillance? “Deep learning, a subset of artificial intelligence, enables networks to train themselves to perform speech, voice, and image recognition tasks." In video surveillance, these networks learn to make predictions through highly repetitive exposure" "In video surveillance, these networks learn to make predictions through highly repetitive exposure to images of humans and vehicles from a camera feed. That ability is ideal for use with drones patrolling perimeters seeking anomalies or in software that significantly reduces the number of false alarms reported to central monitoring station operators. Through use, the software continues improving its accuracy.” – Brian Baker. Valuable audit trail How soon will access control cards become extinct and why? “Access control cards will go the way of the dinosaur, but they still have some life left in them. For the short term, they have plenty of utility in minimum security use cases and leave a valuable audit trail. But for companies that are more technology-centric, particularly those with high value assets, we’re seeing demand for next-generation access control, which includes increased integration with video surveillance systems and professional monitoring services.” – Sean Foley. Which security markets are embracing touchless and contactless systems? “Touchless technology is not a new trend, but contactless systems and transactions have surged since the COVID-19 pandemic. Even after the pandemic is over, it is likely public perception of what is hygienic and acceptable in public spaces will have changed. [We are] seeing an uptick in touchless access control systems in the education and flexible office space markets.” – Brooke Grigsby.

Identity and access management in 2022 - what will the future look like?
Identity and access management in 2022 - what will the future look like?

As we enter into 2022, there is still a level of uncertainty in place. It’s unclear what the future holds, as companies around the world still contend with the COVID-19 pandemic. Remote working has been encouraged by most organisations and the move to a hybrid working system has become ‘business as usual’, for the majority of businesses. Some have reduced their office space or done away with their locations altogether. Following best security practices With all this change in place, there are problems to deal with. According to research, 32.7% of IT admins say they are concerned about employees using unsecured networks to carry out that work. Alongside this, 74% of IT admins thought that remote work makes it harder for employees to follow best security practices. This need to manage security around remote work is no longer temporary. Instead, companies have to build permanent strategies around remote work and security. The coming year will also create a different landscape for small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs). Here are some key predictions for next year and what to start preparing for in 2022: The reality of SMB spending around security will hit home SMBs had to undertake significant investments to adapt to remote working SMBs had to undertake significant investments to adapt to remote working, especially in comparison to their size. They had to undertake significant digital transformation projects that made it possible to deliver services remotely, during the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ve seen a shift in mindset for these companies, which are now more tech-focused in their approach to problem solving. According to our research, 45% of SMBs plan to increase their spending towards IT services in 2022. Around half of all organisations think their IT budgets are adequate for their needs, while 14.5% of those surveyed believe they will need more, to cover all that needs to be done. Identity management spending to support remote work For others, the COVID-19 pandemic led to over-spending, just to get ahead of things and they will spend in 2022, looking at what they should keep and what they can reduce their spending on. Areas like identity management will stay in place, as companies struggle to support remote work and security, without this in place. However, on-premise IT spending will be reduced or cut, as those solutions are not relevant for the new work model. Services that rely on on-premise IT will be cut or replaced. The device will lead the way for security We rely on our phones to work and to communicate. In 2022, they will become central to how we manage access, to all our assets and locations, IT and physical. When employees can use company devices and their own phones for work, security is more difficult. IT teams have to ensure that they’re prepared for this, by making sure that these devices can be trusted. 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