2009 Security Innovation Award – Bronze Medalist: Security Upgrade Helps Grubb Ventures Grow

Major commercial property developer offers tenants premium-level security with Brivo and Integrator ASG Security


For 50 years, the Grubb companies have been leaders in providing customers and partners with superior residential, commercial and development products and services in the Charlotte and Triangle (Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and Cary) markets of North Carolina. Grubb Ventures commands premium lease rates for its properties at its Glenwood Place office complex, and in return, tenants expect superior service and amenities — including building security.

From One Panel to System Standardization

The Glenwood Place development in Raleigh, N.C., comprises seven separate buildings, along with the flagship 3700 Glenwood Place building, where Grubb Ventures is headquartered along with other prestigious clients.

“Previously, we had access control in one of our buildings, but it wasn’t user-friendly at all,” says Bill Burgess, Facilities Manager for Grubb Ventures. “We had to do manual archiving every month, it worked erratically, and we generally just had too many problems. We wanted to upgrade, so I had a demonstration of the Brivo system. We installed one panel, and I loved it.”

Grubb Ventures installed Brivo ACS WebService first in the 110,000-square-foot 3700 Glenwood Place building, and subsequently rolled out the system to the seven other buildings in the complex. To date, Burgess and his long-standing security integrator partner, ASG Security, have installed nine Brivo ACS panels, covering approximately 60 doors that manage daily access for more than 1,000 staff and customers from a highly diverse base of commercial clients.

An Evolving, Increasingly Sophisticated Security Application

In addition to access control, Burgess and ASG have settled on a video surveillance system made up of Clinton DVRs and a mix of Clinton and Honeywell dome cameras that cover key entry and exit points throughout the eight buildings. In all, 45 cameras are deployed, recording to seven DVRs — the system will continue to expand both in the present buildings and as new buildings come online.

With time, and the growing partnership between Grubb Ventures and ASG Security, Burgess and Gregory Curtis, ASG’s Senior Security Consultant, devised innovations to increase overall system effectiveness and efficiency. One such innovation is an integration of the access control and elevator systems.

The elevators in the newer 3700 Glenwood Place building are a Schindler Machine Room-less system — one ASG had not integrated with access control as yet. “There’s a huge difference between putting a card reader outside the elevator cab and putting one inside,” Curtis explains.

After placing it inside the cab, Burgess said, “It works beautifully.” After regular business hours, the Brivo access control system is programmed to provide elevator access only to specific people going to certain floors during multiple, pre-programmed time periods. This successful integration has created a compelling precedent for future elevator-access control integrations in other buildings and for potential integration with HVAC data to better manage resources and cut costs.

Over the last four-plus years, as Grubb has rolled out its access control system throughout the complex, Burgess has been impressed with several aspects of the Brivo ACS. “We didn’t have to buy software, it’s all managed by Brivo,” he says. “We pay one monthly fee, all upgrades are included, and the price doesn’t change.”

Bottom Line: Delight the Client

Grubb Ventures boasts a number of high-profile corporate tenants such as banks and investment advisors, as well as several state boards and agencies that require a high degree of management control to ensure the safety of staff, records and assets.

In addition to real-time protection provided by the complementary access control and video surveillance systems, if tenants want to investigate an incident or request a report, Burgess and staff can comply easily and immediately. After more than four years of system operations, Burgess reports that “break-ins and thefts have just about gone to zero — that’s a huge asset for us and for our tenants.”

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