The Mall Blackburn is benefitting from a fully upgraded CCTV camera and recording solution as well as a dedicated fibre optic cable network thanks to its ongoing relationship with shopping centre security specialist Zada Technology.
Need for safety and security
The Mall Blackburn is home to 100 retail tenants in 600,000 square feet of shopping space, including big names like Debenhams, Primark, Argos, H&M, Topshop and Next. It attracts 13.1 million visitors a year, with each visitor spending an average of 56 minutes at the centre. As well as the retail shop spaces, The Mall Blackburn features a market, and parking spaces for 1,300 vehicles.
With that many people coming through its doors every day, safety and security is of paramount importance.
When The Mall Corporation took over the former Blackburn Shopping Centre, it inherited a CCTV system with some serious issues. Zada was called in to evaluate the system and identified underlying issues with the network.
System upgrade strategy
Together, The Mall Blackburn's management and Zada agreed a maintenance contract and five-year plan for the system's upgrade. At the centre of Zada and The Mall's collaborative strategy was a plan to install a fibre optic cable network throughout the shopping centre. This would be the main 'highway' for any data traffic.
"It's a flexible, dedicated high-speed transmission
"With the fibre optic network, it doesn't matter if it's used for CCTV, intercoms, access control, EMS or whatever else - it's theirs," Zada's Adam Parsonson-Smith says. "It's a flexible, dedicated high-speed transmission system that allows us to add to the network as needed."
The fibre optic equipment was provided by networking specialists AMG Systems, and included its managed network switches.
Upgrading analogue portion of existing system
The next step in the process was to upgrade the analogue portion of the existing system, which constituted around 60 percent of the cameras, to HD networked models from Hikvision. These included static cameras, pan-tilt-zoom cameras, and Darkfighter low light models.
The interior mall spaces were migrated to HD camera coverage in the first year, the external service yard areas and back of house facilities in the second year, and The Mall's extensive car parks were upgraded in year three.
The recording system has also been expanded with an extra two Nuuo Crystal Titan CT-8000 network video recorders. These each include 24 terabytes of storage, bringing the total system storage to 120TB.
Innovative cutting edge technology
The Mall Blackburn General Manager Loraine Jones says the relationship with Zada continues to go from strength to strength. "With a professional and dedicated team the company proactively works with The Mall to enhance and improve the CCTV and associated technical equipment on an ongoing basis," Jones says.
"Since we started working with Zada we have increased the number of CCTV cameras from 40 to more than 140 and the company has been extremely proactive in identifying and trialling innovative cutting edge technology.
All the improvements have helped The Mall's security team and the police to detect and deter crime. Their staff are committed, professional and extremely knowledgeable and we know we can count on them to provide reliable, round the clock assistance."