- FIRM PROFILE
Providing an appropriate level of security in any facility has become increasingly important. Design of a truly effective system requires not only an understanding of sophisticated computer and security technology, but also of risk assessment, facility hardening, and procedure and staffing models. Reliability, maintenance and future growth are also critical considerations.
Our security consultants and engineers include registered Professional Engineers, Certified Protection Professionals, Physical Security Professionals, and Certified Security Consultants.
Security risk assessments, also known as vulnerability assessments, provide a practical method for weighing risk and determining where limited resources should be concentrated. A proper assessment includes defining the criticality of the assets (or the impact of their loss), potential threats (and the probabilities of an occurrence), and vulnerabilities.
As part of our process, we survey the physical site, interview security and operations personnel, review policies and procedures, and evaluate staffing and training. We then analyze the vulnerabilities to determine what countermeasures will mitigate each vulnerability. We consider the costs and prioritize our recommendations to develop a master plan for future planning and budgeting.
As part of that master plan, we are often engaged to develop company or institutional standards (such as guideline criteria, master specifications and installation details) for future use when growing or expanding the organization.
A comprehensive approach considers how the physical systems (barriers, electronics, etc.) will assist the staff in executing the appropriate procedures to provide effective security. Developing the security program early in or concurrent with the planning and development of a new building can eliminate security and life safety conflicts and reduce operating cost by reducing entry and exiting points between different security levels or layers.
We can also assist in the development of company or institutional policies and procedures as well as staffing and training requirements (such as the recommended number and type of staff, job descriptions/qualifications, security staff training and employee security awareness training requirements). We provide consultation in each of these areas and assist our clients in developing effective programs.
Software integration between separate sub-systems can automate security actions and allow the systems to perform as one seamless unit. A well-designed graphical user interface gives the operator the ability to monitor and control multiple systems from a single map-based platform. As these systems continue to evolve, the line between security and information technology blurs.
The security system can communicate via a local area network, allowing authorized management to access the security system or view the video surveillance systems from any workstation on the network. Integrated electronic security systems typically include access control, intrusion detection, video surveillance systems and intercom systems configured for automatic interoperability.
When vacations, sick leave, and benefits are considered, the cost of one officer (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) at a single post can range from $150,000 to $300,000 a year. Without effective training and good procedures, these officers can do more harm than good. Hiring qualified officers and management staff, providing appropriate training, developing good policies and procedures, and testing to constantly improve are important for an effective security program.
Hardening involves looking at each of the physical barriers and strengthening them as circumstances might require. Where warranted, we assist in the design and specification of both fixed and operable perimeter barrier systems (including operable bollards, wedges or hardened gates, crash-rated fixed position barriers, and fencing), facility hardening (blast- or bullet- resistant walls and glazing), and site configuration (e.g., stand-off distance, approach, entry/exit portals, etc.).
Proper lighting design can aid in making the site and facilities safer and more secure. For example, while screening and conducting searches require higher lighting levels, uniformity is more important in parking lots, walkways and other open areas. Additionally, back-lighting can assist or hinder the security program, depending on how it is used.
Appropriate lighting depends on the specific activities taking place in a given area. Properly planned it can provide for a safer and more secure environment. Where existing lighting is questionable, we can assess the existing lighting and provide recommendations where appropriate to bring the lighting up to standards set by the Illumination Engineering Society of North America (IESNA) for safety and security.
It is important to test and verify that the security systems implemented are properly installed and are functioning as intended. Through the process of systems commissioning, we assist our clients in assuring that each part of the system is thoroughly tested and that the tests are properly documented.
Providing full system design documentation (record or shop drawings) is important for the future maintenance and expansion of the system. Poor documentation can lock the owner into a service contract with the installing contractor, or result in higher cost for maintenance and expansion, due to the necessary investigative services required for a different company to service or add to the existing systems.
We can require such documentation in the procurement process and help in the preparation of the documents near the conclusion of the implementation process. We can also review and verify that the appropriate level of documentation is provided by the contractor as part of our services.
Architect: LS3P Associates Ltd.
Intrusion detection, access control, video surveillance systems, intercom, pedestrian traffic and screening, vehicle crash rated barrier and traffic control systems, and a six person security console for the Von Braun Complex – Phase III, an office building and conference facility supporting the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and United States Army Space and Missile Defense Command (SMDC) activities at Redstone Arsenal. The facility houses multiple SCIF areas, three SAPF hotels, a computer room, a 580 seat cafeteria and full service kitchen, a fitness center, and an 800 seat auditorium. The building also meets applicable UFC4-010-01 DOD minimum antiterrorism standards for buildings.
Architect: Lord Aeck Sargent
Access control, alarm monitoring, and video surveillance systems for the Genetic Medicine Building, an eight story research building for the School of Medicine, including laboratory space for genetics, clinical genetics, and pharmacology, as well as a 53,000 square foot, two floor animal facility, and a BSL-3 suite.
Touchscreen-based detention monitoring and control, access control, video surveillance, video visitation, inmate lighting control, inmate telephone control, and intercom and paging systems for the Douglas County Adult Detention and Law Enforcement Center. The building includes 1,488 inmate beds in medium and maximum security areas, inmate kitchen and laundry facilities, an infirmary, and mental health, medical, and clinical space. The facility also accommodates the Sheriff’s office, law enforcement staff, detention administration, and training/support/dispatch areas.
Architect: Wagner Murray Architects, PA
Associate Architect: Mario Botta Architetto
Access control, alarm monitoring, instruction detection, and video surveillance systems for the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, a fine arts museum housing the Andreas Bechtler art collection. The building includes a 350 seat auditorium located below the museum for both public and Wells Fargo corporate functions, as well as a bookstore and classrooms. The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art is part of The Levine Center for the Arts.
Security systems for the National Center for Environmental Health, housing a combination of laboratory, laboratory support, and scientific personnel office space to support the programs of the Division of Laboratory Sciences. The systems include access control, video surveillance, intercom, intrusion detection and visitor screening. Physical security hardening includes architectural recommendations for physical building components and building siting in compliance with federal regulations regarding security for the CDC campus. Campus entrances include counterterrorism components, specifically reinforced standoff, vehicle barriers (fixed and operable), and weapons and explosives screening systems. This building achieved LEED Gold certification.
Architect: Sherman-Carter-Barnhart, PSC
Associate Architect: KPS Group, Inc.
Vulnerability assessment and security systems design including video surveillance, access control, intercom, and intrusion detection for a five story federal office building and courthouse. Also included are an X-ray screening system, metal detectors, Class 3 bullet-resistant fiberglass backing on millwork at the front entry, security fencing, and bullet-resistant glass on the building perimeter. Additionally, a perimeter barrier was established to allow a guard staff to control traffic into the parking areas, and to allow inspection of all visiting traffic. The facility is designed to meet applicable antiterrorism standards defined in GSA’s Facilities Standards for the Public Buildings Service (PBS-P100), the ISC Design Criteria, and the United States DOJ Vulnerability Assessment of Federal Buildings.
Architect: Smallwood, Reynolds, Stewart, Stewart & Associates, Inc.
Access control, video surveillance, and intercom systems for the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, a 2,750 seat venue hosting touring Broadway shows, concerts, educational forums, family programs, and other special events. The building includes a 9,800 square foot banquet hall with a full-service kitchen, a ballroom, meeting rooms, production spaces, administrative offices, building services facilities, and a four level, 700 space parking structure.