Grosvenor Technology's JANUS access control system
Photo credit: (courtesy Grosvenor Technology)
Over the last 15 years the JANUS access control system from Grosvenor Technology has been protecting one of London’s premier business communities. Broadgate, in the City of London, has 14 office buildings, 4.4 million sq ft and 30,000 occupiers. Managed by Broadgate Estates Ltd, the estate is owned by British Land and Blackstone and creates a distinctive environment for some of the world’s largest corporations and leading professional practices.
The office buildings, designed by leading architects, are all structurally independent, ranging in size from 78,000 sq ft to 419,000 sq ft. This creates a demanding security environment, controlling access to multiple buildings through turnstiles and barriers across a wide public area. A flexible access control system with a resilient distributed architecture is therefore fundamental to the needs of Broadgate. The long-term relationship between Grosvenor Technology and Broadgate has not just been about the functionality of the system, but also about the commitment to product development, support and compatibility. The very latest JANUS system installed today is fully capable of incorporating the first JANUS equipment installed over 15 years ago - a major benefit for Broadgate, who undertake the maintenance of the systems.
JANUS is now used for over 300 entry points across the estate to protect access to parking areas and building entrances. Individual office areas in each building often use their own security equipment including access control. Grosvenor has developed an innovative multiplexer interface that allows a single swipe card to be used both on JANUS and third party systems. This means building users only require a single card to gain access to the public areas, such as car parks, as well as their own offices.
Security teams in each of the buildings monitor the JANUS systems for their own areas, so ease of use in operation and configuration is important. The management of lost or replacement cards is easy to achieve and integration with other systems such as Fire, BMS and alarm monitoring ensure fast and safe building evacuation in the event of an incident. Integration is at the heart of the JANUS system, delivering not just improved security, but also end user benefits such as lift control. When a user enters a building and presents their card to a reader that is adjacent to the lifts, the JANUS system informs the lift controller of the floor on which the employee works. The user is then directed to the most suitable lift for the quickest access to that floor!
Operational resilience and redundancy is built into the JANUS solution and is very important to ensure uninterrupted access to the buildings even during equipment or network failures. Each card reader in the JANUS system is connected to an Intelligent Door Controller (IDC). Each IDC can control two doors/locks and interface to a wide range of industry standard card readers and lock mechanisms. IDC’s are networked to the JANUS Server either via serial communications or an IP network. Every card profile associated with a specific IDC is downloaded to the controller to ensure continued operation in the event of a network or power failure.