Idesco Secures World’s Tallest College Residence Hall in NY

The massive security upgrade project cost more than $2 million in total.

Securing the highest college dormitory in the world is a tall order, but New York-based systems integrator Idesco Corp. was up for the challenge. The company elevated its game to install a massive security solution at Pace University’s (N.Y.) new 34-story, 384-room residential hall, which was designed to house 770 students.

“Pace is always looking to keep its students safe, and constantly adding to the infrastructure that is in place,” says Michael Troiani, service manager for Idesco, which has been providing access control and video surveillance systems to the end user for more than 10 years. “They really look at the quality, and if they would like to further enhance the system down the line it is very scalable.”

The project included installing an S2 access control solution inclusive of 390+ ASSA ABLOY PoE locksets, more than 160 Axis IP cameras, in excess of 1,200 voice and data cable runs, 400 cable-TV runs and a Bogen paging system throughout the building. Additionally, five turnstiles were installed in the lobby.

“This installation was a unique opportunity for Idesco. Within an 18-month period, we designed and installed a comprehensive system to secure the tallest dorm in the world. From access control to cameras and voice and data, we covered all security aspects of the project,” says Troiani.

RELATED: University of Central Florida Streamlines Life Safety for New Dorms

Idesco had between eight to 10 employees on hand during the building construction to ensure the project ran seamlessly. The company’s demonstrated expertise in system design and deployment in a job of such scope and complexity allowed Idesco to capture Campus Safety’s sister magazine SSI’s 2016 Integrated Installation of the Year (single site solution). Let’s see how the firm rose to such lofty heights.

‘Trusted’ Integrator Wins Bid
Founded more than 70 years ago, Idesco offers a full range of security products including digital ID badging systems, access control, biometrics, turnstiles, visitor management and digital video surveillance. The company began as a pioneer in ID badging and has evolved into a full-service integrator that designs and manages high-scale system installations for approximately 2,500 clients, including universities, television networks and municipalities.

Founded in 1906, Pace University has campuses in New York City and Westchester County. It has almost 13,000 enrolled students in bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs in its College of Health Professions, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, Lubin School of Business, School of Education, School of Law, and Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems.

Idesco has developed a longstanding relationship with the university, working on multiple security projects and enhancements at both Pace campuses. In late 2013, the firm learned about the school’s plan to erect a new 172,000-square-foot dorm and the RFP for a comprehensive security and communications solution. Idesco then submitted its bid to New Line Structures, the project’s construction management provider, and was awarded the job in March 2014.

“The safety of our students always comes first, so we wanted to make sure that we would keep every one of them safe and secure at all times in their new dorm,” says Tom Tresselt, associate director of safety and security at Pace University. “Working with Idesco in the past on multiple security projects gave us the confidence to know we only wanted our trusted integrator to handle security in the tallest residence hall in the world.”

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Security Last, Not Least
A key component to the project for Idesco was having the ability to manage all phases of the technology. This afforded the integrator greater scheduling flexibility, the ability to control the amount of resources onsite and, most importantly, communicate effectively and directly with the general contractor, consultant and end user without delays or holding up general construction work.

Idesco would end up logging more than 10,000 regular work man-hours plus 2,500 hours of overtime carrying out the job. The installation veered little from its budget of just over $2 million, with around $85,000 worth of change orders.

“Since we have a direct relationship with Pace, we kept the end user very involved during the construction process,” adds Troiani. “We were in constant contact with Pace’s security and IT staff to ensure all standards and requirements were met throughout the installation. Pace’s IT department had guidelines and standards for labeling equipment, and we developed a scheme that identified buildings, mapped entry points and video.”

Solution Is In Session
The now installed system is monitored by Pace’s full-time staff from the guard stations and fire command room. The end user is also able to view the system from its remote offices. Any intervention from a training or technical standpoint can usually be handled from offsite by Idesco through its network connectivity.

“Since it’s an integrated system, it’s a one-stop shop; one place to view all assets. The systems are easy to learn for new guards and employees,” says Troiani.

Ironically, according to Troiani, one of the most noteworthy aspects of this project was its speed – or pace. All the floors had to be finished in a timely manner to meet the deadline of students moving in during July 2015.

“Going forward, the only aspect we would like to see done differently is having the ability to be onsite sooner,” he says.

Read Next: UWG Forges Strategic Partnerships to Promote a Secure Campus

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