Queen Mary University London Case Study

3 Jun 2014

QMUL install AMAG Technology’s Access Control and Alarm Monitoring System

Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) boasts one of the largest multi-campus colleges of the University of London and has more than 10,000 UK, European and international students attending the four campuses. Its roots began over a century ago with four historic colleges: Queen Mary College, Westfield College, St. Bartholomew’s Hospital Medical College and the London Hospital Medical College.

The Mile End campus located in East London was the original home of Queen Mary College, which began in 1885. Although rich in beautiful historical architecture, the campus has expanded, sprouting newer, updated buildings. Academic expansions include an extensive library, medical sciences building, and the award-winning Informatics Teaching Laboratory. In 1992, the Faculty of the Arts building opened its doors and now provides teaching facilities for over 1,000 students, including the Harold Pinter Drama Studio, a performance space that seats an audience of 80. It also includes a computer network, satellite and video-viewing rooms, and language laboratories.

Approximately 2,000 students live on campus in residence halls that provide computer data connections, a grocery store, launderette, large meeting room, and cafĂ© bar. The Students’ Union houses a nightclub with dance floor, bar and restaurant, as well as a gym, complete with saunas and squash courts. Whitechapel Square campus, based in East London, is home to St. Bartholomew’s and The London, Queen Mary’s School of Medicine and Dentistry. The school has a large medical and dental library, and supports one residence hall.

Based in the City of London, Charterhouse Square Campus contains the Genome Centre and Centre for Commercial Law Studies. One residence hall resides on campus along with a student bar and multi-gym.

Just as these colleges were once all run separately, QMUL’s access control system consisted of several standalone solutions supported by several smaller installation companies. QMUL had used the same system for 15 years, with over 100 readers functioning on two main systems. Over time, replacement parts and support became more difficult. QMUL then chose another system, which was installed as several standalone solutions throughout the college. Completely different systems were installed at Whitechapel and Charterhouse Square. By 2002, parts and support were becoming increasingly difficult to find once more. At this point, Richard Mackenzie, office services manager for QMUL, decided it was time to upgrade and invited several security companies to present their solutions.

AMAG Technology attended supplier briefing days, where further detail of the college’s requirements were provided. Vendors asked questions and were given building tours.

“AMAG Technology was immediately struck by QMUL’s openness to innovation, and at the same time also realising the potential costs involved in the large scale upgrade of a number of different systems,” said Sales Manager Special Projects, Keith Townsend of AMAG Technology.

After studying QMUL’s system requirements and learning about campus security goals, AMAG Technology determined the two campuses must implement a facility wide common access control card solution and utilize one card database to centralise administration.

The Mile End and Whitechapel campus received complete upgrades and 11 new door controllers were added at Whitechapel.

QMUL installed AMAG Technology’s Access Control and Alarm Monitoring System to communicate between the Server/Client PC’s and multiNODE Intelligent Door Controllers over QMUL’s existing LAN/WAN infrastructure. The security management system allowed QMUL to obtain one card across all campuses that was controlled from the Mile End campus. Approximately 5,000 cardholders swipe cards through 125 AMAG Technology’s S680 proximity card readers. “This approach greatly limits both replacement cabling costs between buildings and on-going communication line rental between the sites, which are spread across several square miles of East London,” said Townsend.

Using QMUL’s LAN/WAN allows for easy expansion to additional buildings in the future, and provides the college with centralised and local administration facilities using several PCs across the network. Integrating CCTV and ID card production is easy too.

By the end of quarter three in 2005, QMUL will issue all students ID badges from two badging stations. The total card population is 20,000. Approximately 6,000 students per year will be enrolled on the access control system, which is interfaced with the student registry system.

“The security management system provides QMUL with a robust security system capable of handling our student population and more,” said QMUL’s Richard Mackenzie.

A stand-alone workstation equipped with the software allowed security staff to learn the software and populate the cardholder database. Early in the implementation, security operators received training in system management and operation from AMAG Technology.

During 2005, AMAG Technology received a contract to upgrade and expand QMUL’s existing CCTV system at Mile End to integrate with the security management system. Over the next year additional CCTV cameras will be added to respond to alarm activation. A camera viewing a reader-controlled door will record the door in real time when an alarm is activated.

QMUL is so pleased with the results, they are considering expanding the access control software to provide security in additional buildings.

AMAG Technology
T: +44 (0)1684 850977

Challenge House
International Drive
GL20 8UQ
Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire
United Kingdom

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