Executives must handle large security decisions that affect the entire organization – and these choices are rarely easy.
One reason is that there are often competing goals – balancing security vs. convenience, or allocating budget to one priority area vs. another. To make it worse, these decisions – for example, on how to deal with potential security risks – can rely on data that the organization is not tracking.
That may sound hard to believe, but it’s the exact problem Boon Edam found when we conducted a survey on tailgating, drawing responses from hundreds of end users, security integrators and consultants. Most respondents stated that the cost of a physical breach caused by tailgating could range from $150,000 to millions of dollars – even though the overwhelming majority (84%) of respondents weren’t tracking tailgating or didn’t know if they were.
While most businesses know the basic purpose of entrance solutions, many don’t realize the huge number of benefits they can provide – from business analytics to the bottom line.
Cost-Effective Security and Efficient Access
Security entrances can range in purpose from simple crowd control all the way up to comprehensive detection/prevention. With regard to selection, many companies find simpler turnstiles attractive due to the relatively lower capital expenditures and reduced need for user training. While such systems can be an effective deterrent to threats, organizations should consider other costs the system may necessitate, such as those from guard staff or supplemental security systems. For this reason, often companies can achieve greater savings by opting for a security revolving door system: while the initial capital expenditure may be higher than a simpler turnstile system, the business can end up saving a great deal in annual operations costs by reducing the need for supplemental security staff.
In terms of access efficiency, organizations have multiple options as well. For example, a mantrap system may be ideal for a business that requires high security but generally has only a few people going through an entrance at a time. Meanwhile, if the business requires high security but must also accommodate a higher throughput at times (such as during lunch hours), a security revolving door system may end up being the better choice.
Impressive Business Intelligence
To maximize the effectiveness of your security program, it is helpful to remember the old adage: what can be measured can be managed. To that end, security entrances can help
achieve specific security objectives through relevant KPIs. Generally speaking, the level of intelligence received depends on how sophisticated the entrance system is. Simpler waist high turnstiles are useful for basic tracking, such as the number of people entering the facility, though the system may still be vulnerable to turnstile-hoppers. While guard staff can provide supplemental information (visitor data, infraction reports, etc.), data gathered through this approach may be affected by social engineering, including distractions or favoritism on the part of security staff. Ultimately this type of security entrance is best suited to lower-security areas of a facility.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, the sophisticated tailgating and piggybacking detection systems in security revolving doors and mantrap portal solutions provide a wealth of valuable data. These include a great deal of granular information that replaces what a guard could be asked to provide manually – e.g., number of passages, inbound/outbound tailgating and piggybacking rejections, biometric access control rejections, emergency button rejections and so on. Such information is very useful in providing very accurate intelligence on throughput, user education needs, etc.
The most provocative data is predictive data that can tell you your chances of being infiltrated. Security revolving doors and mantrap portals include anti-piggybacking detection technology sophisticated enough to provide a probability, expressed as a small percentage, that two people could piggyback through the door successfully. This capability is new territory for the security industry and allows executives a high degree of confidence that the places these doors protect are secure from infiltration.
Strengthening Corporate Image: Inside and Outside
Let’s face it: perceptions matter. Organizational leaders are responsible for ensuring that their businesses are perceived as safe. And while actual safety and perceived safety are inter-related, they are not always identical. This is seen in other areas of life as well: for example, one YouGov poll showed that people believed that New York City is the second most dangerous city in the US, even though data shows that NYC is in fact the least dangerous large city in the United States.
While harder to measure, aesthetic perceptions matter for businesses as well. To that end, the perception-building process begins the moment a person walks through the door (and oftentimes before that). With that in mind, security entrances should foster confidence for all parties who rely on them: the system must not only protect employees but also help them feel safe on a day to day basis. Beyond actual safety, security entrances also create a feeling of prestige for the facility that impacts personnel and visitors alike. A new visitor’s first interaction with your brand may be with the security system. That first interaction and every one after should foster a feeling of competence, sophistication, efficiency and safety. The more effective companies are at building a positive image in smaller ways, the more effective they’ll be when doing so in bigger ways.
Company: Boon Edam Inc.
Product: Security Doors & Portals
When it comes to elevator protectives, Smoke Guard is the “original orange smoke curtain”. With over 20 years of installed product, our transparent orange colored polyimide film is iconic. Our orange transparent fabric is unparalleled when it comes to providing the smoke protection you require with the ease of install that you have come to expect.
Available in a variety of dimensions to fit various applications, Smoke Guard Systems for elevators are made from a translucent orange smoke resistant material that provides a line of sight for anyone caught in an elevator during an emergency or for emergency personnel. In addition to the screen mounted retract button, the magnetic side guides allow these smoke curtains to be easily pushed aside when access to or from the elevator is required.
When it comes to elevator safety, don’t substitute for anything other than the original orange elevator curtain. Smoke Guard started with this product for a reason and continues to innovate to provide the best possible solution for your smoke safety needs.
Company: Smoke Guard, Inc.
Product: Model 4000 Smoke Curtain
Ambico Limited was involved in retrofitting the Victory Building, a well-known piece of Winnipeg’s downtown core that was constructed in the 1930s. Ambico was approached by the owner of the building to manufacture and retrofit doors at the entrance and lobby. Heritage architects of the Public Works Department of the Canadian government worked with AMBICO engineers to replicate doors that would complement the original design intent of the building’s design team. This project was featured in DHI Magazine as a Case Study. Read the full case study.
Ambico decorative brass clad and bronze clad doors and frames combine outstanding visual appeal with rugged performance in the field. Products are designed in consultation with our project design team to meet the unique requirements of each job. Brass clad or bronze frame cladding is fastened to a heavy gauge steel sub-frame with a touch of craftsmanship. Decorative door face material is fastened to a rugged steel core with care and old world attention to detail. Door face can be manufactured in a stile and rail configuration or in a one piece seamless construction. Gleaming appearance of polished brass or bronze clad products projects an exclusive image at a surprisingly moderate cost. Antique finish of satin brass or bronze clad products suits the design requirements of historical renovation projects.
Product: Decorative Doors and Frames
Proven Mantrap Portal Solutions Cost-Effectively Replace "Do-It-Yourself" Vestibules
Today, many companies build their own mantrap vestibules. However, they often overlook how expensive and difficult it can be to achieve consistent, error-free piggybacking prevention. They don't know that an alternative solution already exists - Boon Edam security portals!
Mantrap Portal Solution
Company: Boon Edam Inc.
Product: Security Doors & Portals
AMBICO’s state-of-the-art pressure resistant door and frame assemblies will keep New York City commuters safe on the city’s brand new commuter rail system
Fourteen stories below the bustling streets of New York City, a massive infrastructure construction project is in full swing. Tunnel-boring machines carve through acres of rock, shaping tunnels and platforms that are slated to carry an estimated 160,000 commuters a day between Queens and Manhattan.
The $10 billion project is known as East Side Access and includes a six-mile-long tunnel, underground subway stations and an impressive rail hub directly beneath the iconic Grand Central Station. Construction on the massive transportation venture began in 2007 and is slated to be completed in 2022.
It’s a marathon project, and AMBICO Limited has been involved since near the beginning of the historic undertaking, working closely with the project architects at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) in New York City to design and fabricate some 275 pressure-resistant door and frame assemblies calculated to keep commuters safe in the event of an emergency situation such as a fire or bomb blast. The doors protect the openings to “areas of refuge,” specially designed rooms set up between the tunnels to offer safety if a major emergency leaves commuters stranded.
An area of refuge has become a common requirement; transportation authorities need to be able to get people to safe areas if something happens, and the doors that protect the rooms are situated deep in the subway tunnels. The door assembly product that AMBICO developed is, therefore, highly specialized.
AMBICO was the logical choice to develop the pressure-resistant door and frame assemblies for East Side Access project. The company’s expertise is already known in New York City, where its expert team has been involved for 20 years with various transportation-tunnel projects. With the Holland Tunnel retrofit in the late 1990s, for example, AMBICO’s team of engineers and machine operators worked hand in hand with the New York and New Jersey Port Authority transportation professionals to design and fabricate doors designed to protect mechanical areas, as well as areas of refuge.
The East Side Access project enabled AMBICO to extend that expertise to a significantly more demanding project. Tim Berry, Senior Engineer at AMBICO, likens it to building a skyscraper in reverse—instead of overseeing a massive build above the ground, the MTA is undertaking an epic construction project deep beneath the cityscape.
The challenging environment means these particular pressure-resistant door and frame assemblies have unique performance requirements. Subway tunnels are narrow, so the door assemblies must be designed to withstand the unique, cyclical, pressure load resulting from each passing subway car that runs 24/7 with fast-moving trains, while the water that seeps through the walls is saline, so they must resist corrosion as well. And it’s essential that these doors meet rigorous NFPA fire performance standards. The challenges are immense as these doors are one vital item in an ongoing transformation that has thousands of moving parts to it. AMBICO must be ready to fabricate the required doors on demand as the tunnels, platforms, and stations slowly take shape. That means that the AMBICO team has had to be ever-ready since 2007, planning the required pressure-resistant door and frame assemblies to exacting specifications and being prepared to supply them as construction targets come into focus.
What AMBICO Supplied
AMBICO has a reputation as an innovator in the specialized door market, a skill-set very much in demand for this particular project. However, working hand-in-glove with Deutscher and Daughter, a New York City-based distri bution firm over 100 years in business was an absolutely essential component of the project's success. Not only was a local distributor’s presence essential to connect AMBICO to the broader project team, but according to company President Becky Deutscher, the small firm's installation and preventive maintenance services maintained over the lengthy warranty period were a key portion of the value-add that AMBICO and Deutscher proposed to the project owner.
Steve Peterman, AMBICO’s Director of Marketing, outlined some of the significant achievements incorporated into the design:
- The doors were modeled by AMBICO’s licensed engineers using structural stainless-steel sub-cores and fully welded door faces. The doors were then finished to the owner’s exacting standards.
- Fire labels are very common in the industry, however there is not a lot of design flexibility when you plan for fire-rated products. For this project, AMBICO had to prototype door assemblies that would withstand significant air pressure and provide them with a fire-resistant certification. The combination makes for very challenging engineering requirements.
- AMBICO ran comprehensive field tests of the product prototypes before the doors were released to the job site. Working closely with specialized multi-point lock manufacturers was a key part of AMBICO's value-add.
- The entire assembly of the hardware, doors, and frames was certified by an independent fire laboratory.
- The assembly was supplied as a complete unit, including the door, frame, glazing, lock, and hinges. It’s guaranteed with a five-year warranty.
The end result is an extremely robust design that enables flexibility of the product in the field.
AMBICO’S International Expertise
Because AMBICO has built its reputation over 60 years, the company is trusted by an international list of clients that includes both governments and private companies. That breadth of experience has led to contracts with many American concerns and a firm knowledge of American regulations and expectations. This particular contract for the East Side Access project stipulated that AMBICO comply with Buy America regulations.
AMBICO’s experienced professionals were well-versed in these provisions so they could quickly coordinate with the top suppliers in the United States for both the procurement of materials, the manufacturing of these unique products and the quality control necessary to assure 100 percent compliance with AMBICO’s design and manufacturing process makes working with an experienced supplier a simple process.
The Value of Time
A transit project is a long-term proposition and few have been in progress longer than East Side Access, an idea that was first presented in 1968. Shovels hit the ground in 2007 for the current incarnation of that long-ago plan, with completion planned for late 2022.
That’s a very, very long timeline. An established and focused company like AMBICO has decades of experience in the business and can look decades to the future, providing a seamless and hands-on approach to massive infrastructure projects with changeable timelines.
Judah Silverman, Vice-President at AMBICO, says the company excels at projects that involve a high level of coordination and service. The AMBICO team builds in travel and inspection visits, anticipating that high-level projects entail a very high level of care. Their commitment to East Side Access is nine years and counting, with AMBICO’s creative engineering team continually fine-tuning manufacturing and delivery requirements to match the client’s changing needs. It’s an approach that has already caught the eye of transit planners around the country who have contacted the company to discuss similar ideas as they study updates to their own transportation and security systems.
Meanwhile, deep, deep below the teeming streets of New York, the work continues apace. When the doors finally open in six years, revealing glamorous shopping con - courses, sparkling platforms, miles of elevators and escalators, and a commuting shortcut between Manhattan and Queens, AMBICO’s pressure-resistant door and frame assemblies will all be in place, keeping commuters safe in the event of an emergency.
“Our ‘tunnel vision,’” says Silverman, “is one that is both advanced and forward-looking, a model for future transportation projects around the globe.”
Product: Engineered Doors and Frames
Of: Jack Shinder
Does your security system only detect tailgating? What if someone is determined to infiltrate your building? Would you be interested in a truly preventative solution?
As you enter the exhibits hall at ASIS or ISC West, take a moment to pause and scan the exhibits on the floor. I find that about 80% of the floor space and displays seem focused on video surveillance and access control and related products. Every year, there are new technologies and improvements that make surveillance more accurate at identification, and access control more integrated with other building technologies. Biometric technologies are no longer science fiction but instead are maturing and becoming a feasible option for more and more businesses.
Surveillance and access control systems have been essential for decades. Yet despite great strides in these technologies, we have seen time and time again security breaches where these systems are not enough. If someone is truly determined to get into a building, what will it take to prevent them from gaining access?
A great example of a determined individual happened a few years ago: a 16-year-old boy from New Jersey gained unauthorized entry at about 4 am to One World Trade Center, in New York, and roamed the premises for two hours before being caught. The building had a security system estimated to cost $20 million when it was installed. But none of that mattered when the security guard on duty fell asleep and the young man took the elevator up to the top floor to access the roof, take photos, and then brag on social media.
It was a big wake-up call because everyone realized that even after a significant investment, this landmark building was still vulnerable, and it could very easily have been someone other than a teenaged parkour addict looking for a thrill. Building owners and senior executives very often don’t realize how vulnerable they are to infiltration—that they have a dangerous gap in prevention.
I use the word “prevent” very purposefully. If you have surveillance and access control systems, even biometrics, are you preventing infiltration? If the building has swinging doors at its access points the answer is, “No.” Indeed, this is a deterrent situation, but it is not a preventative one. One of the most common methods of gaining unauthorized entry to a building is known as “piggybacking” or “tailgating.” Many of us have badged into our building, and then held the door open for someone who looks like they also work there. You just created a serious security breach and you put yourself, your colleagues, the business and its future at risk. The best access control systems in the world can be defeated by exploiting the fact that people are nice and will often allow others to follow them through a door they’ve unlocked.
When we surveyed security professionals about tailgating, we asked them to estimate the potential costs of a physical breach from unauthorized entry: 54% believed the cost would range from $150,000 to “too high to measure.” It doesn’t take much imagination to think about the worst case scenario—sadly, they happen about every week. Without prevention, you are relying on human beings to remain vigilant, never get distracted or tired, remain at their post, follow the rules and never let anyone tailgate behind them. You are also assuming that no one is determined to get into your building. So, when a physical breach occurs, how will you know it happened and how quickly could you respond? One of our survey respondents put it this way, “[You] cannot depend on one technical solution to mitigate the risk...you need barriers, followed by surveillance, and appropriate response plans.”
Only a small percentage of the exhibits at ASIS or ISC West offer such “barriers,” also known as pedestrian security entrances, or turnstiles and security doors. I strongly encourage you to evaluate your current risk of infiltration and to learn more about the various types of barriers available. Some will need human supervision and will provide an alarm if breached. Others can physically prevent tailgating and operate without manned supervision, creating quicker ROI.
What is your stance on tailgating: do you want to detect it or prevent it?
Company: Boon Edam Inc.
Of: Mark Borto
GuardDog Self-Closing Gate uses two stainless steel torsion springs so the gate can open in any direction
The GuardDog Self-Closing Gate is tough, durable and easy to install. Featuring a unique self-closing design with two stainless steel torsion springs, the GuardDog industrial safety gate can open in any direction. To meet diverse application requirements, the gate is available in 5 nominal sizes and is adjustable laterally to 6” (-3 to +3 of the nominal size).
The GuardDog Self-Closing Gate arm is dimensioned to match top- and mid-rail heights of an OSHA-compliant guardrail. When the gate is installed and the top of the gate is at the OSHA’s recommended nominal height of 42”, the bottom of the gate is positioned at a height of 21”.
- Gate comes fully assembled and includes securing hardware for standard installation on pipe
- Requires only one 1/2’’ wrench and a few minutes to install
- Available in powder coat safety yellow, hot-dip galvanized or 316 stainless steel; Special colors available upon request
Our standard Hinge Assembly fits round pipe or square tubing measuring up to 2’’ O.D, or it can also mount on angle iron or flat surfaces. For railings which are larger than 2” O.D, contact BlueWater Manufacturing and we will have an adapter kit available to use or provide a solution to mount the gate safely.
Applications range from ladder ways, mezzanines, pedestrian traffic, machine guarding, universal mount is designed to fit any hand post angle and direction. BlueWater’s industrial safety gate is available in food grade stainless steel, carbon steel powder coated and galvanized.
Company: BlueWater Mfg
Recently, AMBICO has designed and supplied nearly 100 acoustic (both wood and steel) doors and frames for the new Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts at Queen’s University in Kingston, ON, Canada. AMBICO has been involved from the very beginning (the early design stages of the project) right through to the installation.
Due to the nature of the building (a performance hall), the architects had to rely on AMBICO’s acoustic material to block the sound from room to room. AMBICO produced STC 40 (steel and wood) doors and STC 51 (steel) doors for the project, plus some unequal pairs of STC 59 (steel). There won’t be any sound travel in this building!
Although still undergoing construction, the Centre promises to be impressive. A $63 million project; $22 million was generously donated by Drs. Alfred and Isabel Bader. The Centre is named in honor of Isabel Bader, for her love of music and theater.
Concealed behind this incredible building and its benefactors is a truly romantic love story: Isabel met Alfred aboard a ship, the two courted and more than 400 love letters were exchanged. After their relationship ended prematurely, Alfred went on to marry someone else and have a family. Years later, when Alfred was divorced, he and Isabel rekindled their romance and the two got married and remain happily married today.
Of: Alison Capuano
AMBICO Limited was delighted to play a key role in the renovation of this beautiful and highly regarded heritage property right in our home town, Canada’s capital city. If you’ve ever been to Ottawa then you might recognize this building just from its picture—it’s the Sir John A MacDonald Building, the former flagship branch of the Bank of Montreal originally built over 80 years ago.
Situated at the heart of Ottawa’s Parliamentary Precinct, it hosts Parliamentary and Senate meetings and functions, international gatherings, special ceremonies and state events. AMBICO had the opportunity in 2012 to meet with the architectural team charged with the development of the $1 billion retrofit of the entire Parliamentary Precinct. Working closely with our long-time & valued distributor, Upper Canada Hardware, we developed STC door and frame products able to meet the unique demands of the project. This project was featured in DHI Magazine as a Case Study.
Boon Edam Inc., a global leader in security entrances and architectural revolving doors, today announced that its Turnlock 100 full height turnstile will be a featured technology in an upcoming episode of “Machines: How They Work” on the Discovery Science Channel.
About the Show
Each 30-minute episode of “Machines: How They Work” specializes in revealing the fascinating hidden workings of our everyday world using incredible photo-realistic CGI to explode everyday objects into their component parts. The show also films in live action at real locations to show how objects are manufactured and operate in their installed environment.
About the Episode
The episode featuring the Boon Edam Turnlock full height turnstile will air in the United States at 10:30 pm on Thursday, May 12th. That episode seeks to reveal the answers to the following questions about three featured products:
• How does a frozen yogurt maker convert gallons of liquid into fluffy frozen dessert?
• How does a turnstile allow authorized people to enter, but stop intruders in their tracks?
• How can the office chair keep the world’s workforce comfortable?
The turnstile segment was filmed in North Carolina at Boon Edam’s Lillington manufacturing plant to show how the components of a turnstile are built and assembled. Turnstiles installed at Cree Research in Research Triangle Park (NC) were filmed to illustrate how turnstiles operate in a real-world environment, and stop intruders from entering a secure area.
"What an honor to be selected by Discovery Channel to be featured on this program," said Mark Borto, Boon Edam CEO. "For many, a turnstile is nothing special, but the way this program explains the manufacture and use of the humble turnstile demonstrates there is a lot more going on than meets the eye."
Company: Boon Edam Inc.
Since 1959 the Bronx campus has stood proudly in New York City but after more than 50 years it was in need of some touching up. Our recent project at Bronx Community College was all about helping to retrofit the building by providing AMBICO’s Recessed Panel Doors & Frames. And it’s amazing what some new technology can do to revive an older building.
AMBICO, for its part, supplied 12 – 16 gauge, seamless edge, Recessed Panel doors and 6 – 14 gauge double frames. Eight decorative doors were ordered with two panels and four decorative doors were ordered with four panels. In the photo you see here, there is a steel recessed panel transom. However, not all doors for this building were ordered with steel transoms, some were provided with glazing to match the panel design.
Each panel is individually manufactured and then recessed deeply into the door face to create a prominent “shadow” around the perimeter of each rectangular panel. In addition, the panel sizes have been customized in quantity and shape to meet the unique job requirements of this project. The wonderful thing about this decorative style is that it integrates an “old world” recessed panel motif with modern security materials and up-to-date insulating products.
Our Recessed Panel doors offer a unique modern solution to an old problem. AMBICO thrives on helping buildings regain their former glory so that they can continue to stand proud for years to come!