Birmingham's NEC

4 Jul 2013

Axis network cameras enable the NEC to deliver security and traffic management in real-time. Innovative solution helps deliver the NEC’s aim to become ‘venue of choice’.

Organization: The NEC

Location: Birmingham, UK

Industry segment: Stadiums/Venues

Application: Safety and security

Axis partners: Vindex Systems, Genetec

Mission

The NEC is located on a 610-acre site, eight miles from Birmingham city centre offering more than 186,000 square metres of covered exhibition space spanning 33 conference suites and 20 interconnecting halls, in addition to over 160 acres of hard standing ground and 75 acres of woodland. The venue welcomes approximately 2.1 million visitors each year to over 140 diverse trade and consumer events - including long-standing shows like BBC Gardeners’ World, BBC Good Food Show and

Spring Fair alongside specialist exhibitions such as Clothes Show Live and Festival of Quilts - plus over 400 live events and conferences. The NEC has stated that it wants to be the ‘venue of choice’ for the UK’s leading events.

Solution

Axis partner Vindex Systems led a proof of concept trial which included camera shoot-outs using various manufacturers’ cameras side by side onsite at the venue to see in a live situation which would be best for the challenge. The result being that Vindex selected Axis HD IP PTZ and fixed cameras to be installed.

Result

Thanks to Axis network cameras’ ease of set up, highquality images and their ability to integrate with the Genetec Video Management Software platform, the NEC now has real-time high-quality information and the necessary communication tools to deliver ‘intelligence-lead safety, security and traffic management’.

“Our customers’ experience and safety is paramount. The fact that we are using a state–of-theart, future proof security and traffic management solution enables us to be confident that they

will keep on returning to our venue.“ Gary Masters, the NEC group security and traffic operations manager.

Better utilising security and traffic teams to reduce incidents

The NEC is located on a 610-acre site, eight miles from Birmingham city centre offering more than 186,000 square metres of covered exhibition space spanning 33 conference suites and 20 interconnecting halls; in addition to over 160 acres of hard standing ground and 75 acres of woodland. The venue welcomes approximately 2.1 million visitors each year to over 140 diverse trade and consumer events - including long-standing shows like BBC Gardeners’ World, BBC Good Food Show and

Spring Fair alongside specialist exhibitions such as Clothes Show Live and Festival of Quilts - plus over 400 live events and conferences.

The NEC has stated that it wants to be the ‘venue of choice’ for the UK’s leading events.

Paul Austin, director at Vindex Systems, an Axis gold partner, said: “We have worked with the NEC to deliver an integrated solution to improve the effectiveness of its security and traffic teams. We carried out a rigorous testing process of potential solutions to ensure an enhanced customer experience alongside increased safety measures. We chose to install over 200 Axis cameras within the fully integrated solution.”

The project was part of the NEC’s wider objective to become the ’venue of choice’. Security solutions are key to achieving this; if customers and exhibitors are confident of the security measures in place at the venue they will select it to host their events. Vindex Systems acted as the principal contractor and provided all civil and electrical works. There was a team of 20 working on site.

Paul continued: “The project was challenging as the site was continuing to operate during the installation. There were over 2 million visitors during the duration of the project so we had to ensure the work was well coordinated with the minimum of disruption. We also had to create a multi-point wireless network to ensure the infrastructure had the ability to support the new cameras and management software across the whole 650-acre estate.”

The Axis cameras selected by Vindex Systems were subjected to a camera ‘shoot-out’, alongside other manufacturer’s cameras on site to prove their effectiveness and quality in a live environment. The Axis cameras proved to be the best quality and most effective solution.

Vindex selected to deploy 168 Axis cameras made up of 130 fully functional AXIS P5534 indoor 720P HDTV pan/tilt/zoom cameras, five AXIS P3344 720P HDTV indoor fixed dome cameras, eight AXIS Q1755 720P HDTV cameras with integrated ten optical zoom lens. They also provided NEC with 25 AXIS M1054 HDTV cameras, made available to exhibitors to hire during exhibitions to provide them with real-time streaming of the event.

40 AXIS P3367-V fixed dome cameras were deployed to cover the exhibition centre’s main entrances in order to meet the challenging light conditions due to the amount of glass used in the lobby. Axis solutions were also deployed to enable seamless integration with the chosen Genetec VMS Platform, which is vital in centrally managing the security and traffic operations for the site from a newly created ‘Venue Operations Centre’. The integrated solution provides all operators with intelligent, high quality, intuitive information in order for them to make informed decisions based on the time of day and activity on site.

Gary Masters, the NEC group security and traffic operations manager concluded: “The centrally managed and integrated solution provided by Vindex Systems has already proven to be an effective tool. The high quality images that the Axis cameras provide are vital in our efforts to reduce incidents of crime and ultimately helped to improve the effectiveness of our security and traffic management team.

“Our customers’ experience and safety is paramount. The fact that we are using a state–of-the-art, future proof security and traffic management solution enables us to be confident that they will keep on returning to our venue.”

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