Fill up with access rights once a day

Municipal utilities – this is generally associated with local transport, energy and water supply. Culture, on the other hand, does not really come to mind. Different in Augsburg. Here the former gas factory has developed into a creative work of art, offering attractive premises to many artists and start-up companies. Right in the middle as the technical link: an electronic locking system based on the ZEUS® Keyless access control system from ISGUS.

The location is not a bad choice to give free rein to creativity as well as to develop successful business ideas. The gas factory, which was completed in 1915, former produced gas from coal and survived the second world war almost undamaged. The construction of a large chamber furnace in the 1950s resulted in a real gas coking plant. Half a century later the plant was shut down.

The complex with its courtyard-like arrangement of buildings and gas tanks on an area of 70000 quadrat metres is today a European industrial monument in a "place with aura". Open air events take place here, and there is also a restaurant and bar. A part of the State Theatre is at least temporarily housed here and has rented 80 percent of the premises. The other 20 percent consist of offices and practice rooms as well as studios for cultural workers and start-ups.

There are several reasons for access control with electronic locking systems. One of them: "We want to save ourselves keys and key management", says Bernhard Liepert, Project Manager Electrical Engineering. According to ISGUS sales representative Christian Danziger, it is no coincidence that ZEUS® keyless was chosen: "The municipal utilities have been working with us for several years, most intensively in the field of ZEUS® access control. For time management, ISGUS supplies terminals that transfer the time bookings directly to SAP.

The municipal utilities have followed every step of ZEUS® development, always using the latest generation. This meant that in addition to access control and SAP time recording, the multifunctional employee cards could also be used for payment in the canteen or stadium, for example. The LEGIC advant transponder technology makes this possible. Today round about 125 access control and 35 time and attendance terminals are distributed throughout the city.

So what milestone does ZEUS® keyless represent in the creative work? The doors in the other buildings of the municipal utilities are cabled and also integrated in the access control. The centrally stored access authorizations for each individual door are distributed to several so-called access control centres where they are available around the clock to check access bookings.

Depending on the numbers and structure of buildings, this cabling is a cost-intensive matter. And inflexible about it, as Bernhard Liepert explains “we deal with a large number of functional rooms and different tenants at the creative work – and therefore highly complex access authorisations. This requires flexible handling so that the effort involved for all those involved is kept within limits.” The theatre is a descriptive example: for the ballet hall in the 6th floor the dancers, but not the actors need access. At the workshop on the first floor, where sceneries and props are created, the dressers have no business.  The cleaning staff, on the other hand, understandably have their work to do everywhere - but not all the times. And the outside entrances naturally all use the same. Another example are the studios, practise rooms and offices for cultural working people and start-ups. Fluctuation is part of everyday rental life.

They didn’t even want to start with keys here. And it is immediately obvious that the theatre people and tenants do not want to be constantly on hand to update authorisations on their transponders or have them blocked in the event of loss.

The solution: daily validation, i.e. allocation of spatial and temporal access rights at generally accessible terminals - so to speak "filling up with data". The five municipal utility employees currently working here do this via their time recording terminals - technically not a matter of course, but an innovative ISGUS service. There is a central validation reader for the theatre staff and the other tenants. If desired, additional readers can be set up for the so-called "access-on-card" procedure. The handling of this offline solution is simple: "The transponder is written contactlessly with the authorizations when held to the reader," explains Bernhard Schwaighofer, head of ISGUS-bavaria. "Afterwards, you only have to hold it against the knob of the respective door - and the system clears the way".

And because this is so practical - and economical - the properties of the municipal utilities divisions Holding, Energy and Transport will also be equipped with ZEUS® keyless in the coming months. "Because here, too, we need flexible authorisation allocation. This makes it much easier when, for example, trainees change departments or even move entire departments", says Bernhard Liepert. Up to now, the company has been content to pass on keys or reprogram ID cards. The new access solution is designed for 3000 users. A 500,000-euro project which documents that the Augsburg public utility company not only has a knack for culture, but also for organization and security.