Norrland’s oldest city depends on ARX for access control

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ASSA’s ARX access control system, incorporating the BluARX server solution, is an integral part of the perimeter security system for all municipal facilities in Gävle, Sweden.

The municipal buildings are owned and managed by Gavlefastigheter, a company that in turn belongs to Gävle Municipality. The company’s property portfolio – 500,000 square meters of floor space in total –includes everything from preschools and cultural buildings to industrial and commercial buildings.

When Gavlefastigheter decided to install access control as part of perimeter security for all municipal facilities, emergency services requirements had to be considered. Gästrike Räddningstjänst, the emergency services organization, required that its personnel be able to enter municipal buildings in the event of an emergency. Traditionally, this would be achieved by installing key cabinets on the exterior walls of all municipal buildings – a costly business.

With ARX, emergency personnel are issued access cards that they can use to enter any municipal building.

“It works great,” says Bengt Nyman, security coordinator at Gavlefastigheter.

“It’s a great feature that the emergency services crew can enter with their access cards. It was hopeless the old way, when they could be forced to drive past a fire on the way from an earlier call to pick up the right keys at the station. Even nurses and various kinds of on-call staff have easy access to buildings they need to enter – as do security guards, of course.”

Staff, temporary employees, pupils and users of the municipal recreational facilities are just a few of the groups that benefit from Gävle’s ARX initiative. Importantly, people can be given access cards that only work at certain times.

“Authorization times for temporary fill-in staff can be entered directly,” Nyman says. “The cards are automatically blocked if they forget to return them.”

RiTA, a previous-generation access control system, has been used in Gävle for more than 10 years, but is now being replaced by ARX. Today, more than 1,100 ARX readers have been installed, and the number is constantly rising.

“We are in the process of connecting all of the buildings to the system and within a year all perimeter security doors will be monitored by the same server,” Nyman says.

Gavlefastigheter also opted for BluARX, a web-based server solution with software pre-installed at the time of deployment. With BluARX, new versions of ARX are automatically downloaded to the server as soon as they become available and then the administrator decides when to install them.

“We were told that BluARX was stable and it’s true – it just keeps on running,” Nyman says. “The RiTA system communicates with ARX and we don’t have to worry about it.”