Matrix Systems Awarded Municipal Contract for Wireless Access Control

The City of Asheville, North Carolina, has signed a contract with Matrix Systems to standardize its physical security in several municipal facilities with an enterprise-based access control system.

Matrix Systems, a turnkey security management solutions provider that specializes in government, transportation, business, education, health care and industrial facilities, is providing its access control system. The initial phase will include dozens of doors and areas in the city's William Wolcott Jr. Public Works Building, City Hall, Asheville Police Department Firing Range and the Municipal Building, which houses the police and fire departments, according to Kevin Hymel, Technical Services Manager, City of Asheville. Once the initial phase is completed in two months, the 226-year-old city of 78,000 people will incorporate additional buildings into the scalable system over the next several years.

"From an IT perspective, using this enterprise-based access control system will give us unprecedented redundancy with an additional fail-over server that automatically takes over in the event we have any server-related issues," Hymel said.

The system, which was funded by government grants to the police department, will feature wireless equipment in some areas. Parking lots and other remote outdoor areas will use wireless transmission instead of cost-intensive trenching and cabling surveillance. Wireless will also increase security and accountability at the firing range by replacing conventional locks with electronic key and lock cylinders that record and report all door events in ancillary areas to the centralized access control software.

"As we continue to become more security conscious, both internally and externally, the installation of the Matrix System will enhance and improve the current building security system to a level that will be state-of-the-art for several years to come," said Capt. Daryl Fisher, Commander of Support Services Division, Asheville Police Department. "Building security is designed to ensure accountability for internal inventories, while providing our citizens with the best customer service possible."

The new system will also save money by requiring only one proximity ID badge, instead of the several badges required by the city's past array of vender access control systems. "Having one ID card will save the city money in productivity and maintenance costs versus the old methods," said Steven Frey, a city systems analyst that's overseeing the vendor access control implementation.

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