Port Authority of Allegheny County

Port Authority Transit (PAT) was created by legislation enacted by the Pennsylvania General Assembly in 1956. PAT employs 3,100 employees and serves more than 260,000 daily commuters and 76 million riders annually through its downtown sub-way and light rail systems, 2 inclines and more than 1000 buses. It is the 13th largest transit agency in the country and covers over 730 square miles. PAT consistently im-plements ground breaking initiatives in an effort to improve public transportation.


When PAT moved their offices to the third and fourth floor of the old Heinz Building, they wanted to retain their current ID system, but also desired access control and office security. Full communication and integration between the offices and subway system to their main location, was also desired. The outdated existing system did not have the capability to monitor and be controlled offsite.

Advanced ESI satisfied the needs of PAT by providing a turnkey installation of a   Pelco CCTV   system and a Lenel   security access system that includes alarm monitoring points. We furnished the third floor of the office building with   card readers   for each of the main points of ingress/egress doors, along with monitoring   on additional ancillary doors. Also, on the fifth floor, we installed cameras and card access on doors with monitoring on other secondary doors. This allows for entrances and exits to be locked/unlocked according to a custom schedule that can be easily modified according to need and also gives control to the front desk receptionist to override the system when desired. Advanced handled the challenges of doors and hardware that were incompatible with the system to make it  fully operational and seamlessly integrated.

The undertaking also included the protection of 80 doors within the three downtown subway stations, Steel Plaza, Wood Street, and Gateway Center. Using Communications protocol RS485 allowed us  to integrate existing hardware, card readers, door contacts, bells, wiring and telephone cabling, to operate smoothly with the new system and consolidate communication between the three stations and the Pitt Towers. Now, should any door be opened out of schedule, alarms are signaled at the control center, and bells ring throughout the terminal to summon security. Advanced was also able to flawlessly infuse the current ID system with the new security system.

The entire system resides on Port Authority’s fiber wide area network. Adding/removing information, changing schedules and numerous other tasks can be completed at the main control center located at the Pitt Towers.

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