Integrating technologies to maximize security for stadiums

Integrating technologies to maximize security for stadiums
Sports events are exciting, fun places to be; however, when a stadium fills for these events, safeguarding all those in attendance, the players and stadium staff from unknown dangers is a challenge. A combination of the right security technologies could help stadium operators reduce risks and increase safety.

Integrating Various Systems

Information sharing is just one of the benefits of systems integration. Nowadays, integration between different security systems is more of a requirement than a request; however, integration has also spread beyond security.

Integration of public safety systems with third-party, private-entity camera systems is one recent trend, according to Hank Monaco, VP of Marketing for Building Technologies and Solutions at Johnson Controls. This “encourages private and public entities to join forces for safer, smarter and more efficient communities.” He added that “this type of approach and technology allows law enforcement and local businesses to work together to make their communities safer and more secure.” 

“We [Johnson Controls] also integrate with the audio visual systems to facilitate enhanced life safety and security information dissemination,” Monaco said. “The focal point of any security system is the command and control center. These rooms contain huge LCD monitors where security personnel can view hundreds of closed-circuit TV cameras positioned throughout the stadium. These same cameras are also visible to public safety authorities so they can dispatch a coordinated response in the event of an emergency. Additional public safety systems include emergency response buttons, as well as emergency phone kiosks.” 
 
David Chauvin, 
Business Development Manager,
Public Safety Solutions, 
Genetec

David Chauvin, Business Development Manager of Public Safety Solutions at Genetec, explained how aggregating multiple systems and data points under a single interface could create much simpler workflows for operators: “Instead of having to rely on a variety of independent systems (e.g., video surveillance, access control, license plate recognition (LPR), behavioral analytics, visitor management/escort and emerging trends such as drone detection and social media) spanning across multiple monitors, any and all relevant information can be pushed to the right operator, at the right time.”

“By quickly having the right information pushed to the right operators, while simultaneously sharing parts or all of the system with local law enforcement, a venue’s awareness of a critical situation is significantly heightened,” said Chauvin. “This also helps a venue in collaborating with law enforcement, by better understanding what happened, what is and which resources to dispatch and where. With the automation and computerization of advanced workflows, large-scale incidents can be better managed in real time, and the responses workflow can also be audited after the fact for training purposes.”

A system such as the Genetec Security Center, which has its own core modules (video, access control, LPR and audio), is able to integrate sensors and data from any outside source. “Additionally, our feature allows a venue to share its Genetec system with any law enforcement agency, yet remain in full control of what content is shared (alarms, live video, recorded video, specific cameras, etc.), when it’s shared (24/7, during events only, in times of crisis, etc.) and what features are made available to law enforcement (viewing versus control privileges based on the current state of the system),” added Chauvin.

Integration with other sources such as social media feeds, automatic identification systems (AIS), weather, traffic, gunshot detection, facial recognition and other crime and incident data is further helping security staff with situational awareness, which can speed up the process to potentially prevent an unauthorized visitor or respond to a potential harmful incident.

Still, it is important to consider an overarching system that correlates disparate sensor data from various systems and uses machine learning in the background to connect potential issues in a more efficient way than humans could by themselves, advised Jeffery Miller, SVP of MSA Security. “Too many times, venue operators install many different systems to gather data and are overwhelmed with the volume of data that becomes unusable because it is not synthesized properly.”
Hank Monaco,
VP of Marketing for
Building Technologies and Solutions,
Johnson Controls

Maximizing Technologies

More important than a single technology to address security concerns is implementing a process to address the holistic technology needs and desired outcomes for the stadium as early as possible, inclusive of security requirements, according to Monaco.

“Constructing a smart stadium that meets energy, technology, security and operational objectives depends on early collaboration between the owner, design and construction teams, sharing informed, data-driven decisions about connectivity, security and interoperability,” Monaco explained. “With deliberate expert attention applied early during the planning phase, pitfalls can be avoided and the security needs of the stadium can be met. This is why, increasingly, stadium owners and their team are selecting a single point of responsibility for technologies early in the process.”

The Johnson Controls process of technology contracting involves assigning a single point of responsibility upfront to bring an enterprise-wide perspective to managing the planning, design, installation, integration, commissioning and service of technology systems, business applications and supporting infrastructure.

“Technology contracting can save time, reduce risk and decrease construction and operating costs while ensuring that technology is deployed and integrated in an orderly manner to achieve desired outcomes,” Monaco said.

 

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