The growing Argentinean economy has been a boon to the entire country. Unlike the current economic situation in many places in the world, new jobs are being created every day. Lic. Christian Uriel Solano, President of Security One Argentina, noted that one of main benefits – for Argentina as a whole – is the “ability for its citizens to not only get jobs, but to get better jobs."
And with these better jobs, comes a better salary. Unfortunately, better work and better pay cannot alone solve all of society's problems. This is where Security One Argentina, and Hikvision, can help.
This recent economic surge has presented the city of Magdalena's greater metropolitan area a unique opportunity; and this opportunity has come in the form of a test case for public security solutions called the Safe City Project.
Located in the province of Buenos Aires, this Safe City Project actually encompasses the cities of Magdalena, Bavio, Atalaya and Vieytes; and provides security for over 40,000 citizens.
Yet, what makes this particular civic project so notable is the fact that it represents the first opportunity for system integrators to utilize high-quality products in a public fashion. Mr. Solano explained "that previously the economy simply could not afford projects such as this; but now the combination of greater civic funds, combined with high-quality Hikvision products – make this a first for Argentina."
Additionally, this Magdalena case also represents an additional opportunity: the ability to use, and apply, technology in a setting that had never been attempted in Argentina before. One such example is fiber-optics, as Mr. Solano noted: "Previously, we had used utilized fiber-optics in private settings. But, because of the higher costs involved, no Argentinean system integrator had been able to employ these solutions in a public project like this. As such, this has been a real-world learning experience, but it was imperative that we find the highest quality products at affordable prices."
The Nuts & Bolts of the Project
As the name implies, the goal of this project was to provide the citizens of these cities a greater level of security. To do so, the decision was made to create a video surveillance solution that would monitor, and control, key access points in these cities. Additionally, as Mr. Solano explained, the goal of "better surveillance for the various popular nightlife areas was also an important factor."
To do so, Security One Argentina and VIMOX S.R.L, the system integrator for this project, chose Hikvision's DS-2DF1-617H IP Speed Dome Camera and DS-2CD852MF-E 2 Megapixel IP Camera. Both of these cameras provide "tremendous resolution and detail, allowing a central monitoring center the ability to clearly see what was happening in real time," Mr. Solano explained.
Additionally, a combination of long-range wireless links and fiber-optic cable was used to connect these Hikvision cameras to the head office. It was determined that at certain points in Magdalena, and the other cities, long-range wireless links would be a better economical fit for the needs of this specific project. And significantly, this technology now provides wireless connectivity for up to 30 kilometers from the central monitoring office.
But of equal importance, this project represented a first for Argentina: never before had long-range wireless links been used on such a large public project. "While smaller projects had previously utilized wireless technology, nothing had been attempted that involved multiple cities; as well as each of the multiple locations within each individual city," Mr. Solano explained.
The wireless network infrastructure is reliable and economic solution for these medium or small cities.
The central monitoring office was set-up with two 42-inch digital LCD monitors to view the Hikvision cameras' surveillance. Security One Argentina and VIMOX S.R.L decided that high-end monitors were essential to this project because of Hikvision cameras' superior detail and resolution.
Additionally, Hikvision's detailed recognition also benefited the police and fire departments, along with overall emergency services. This improved resolution allowed all of these public institutions to not only assess potential situations more quickly; but critically, to allow them to respond in more timely manner.
Yet, while the performance of these cameras was paramount to this solution, it is only one aspect that swayed Security One Argentina and VIMOX S.R.L towards Hikvision products. Mr. Solano remarked, "It is a congruence of factors why we chose Hikvision cameras for the Safe City Project. Ultimately it came down to the unique combination of quality, great technology, and a very competitive price." Additionally, a level of confidence in using Hikvision products was inherent, since Hikvision has a long history of working with cities in China on similar "Safe City" projects.
At this point, the Safe City Project represents a boundary of sorts for larger civically-oriented security solutions in Argentina. While the modern-day economic situation is improving, the ability to duplicate a similar surveillance program on a larger scale is not currently feasible.
But, based on the results of this first solution, this glass ceiling could very well be removed in the near future; and in turn create a market for cities both larger and smaller throughout the country. Much of the criteria for such a decision will rest upon the performance of the current Safe City Project in the Magdalena area.
Initial results for this project, and the future of large-scale public surveillance programs throughout Argentina, has been very promising. After only a few months of operation, the greater Magdalena area has seen a decrease in vandalism, theft, and violence – all a direct result of this surveillance solution. Additionally, response times to emergencies have been improved.
In anticipation of such, Security One Argentina originally designed this solution with the ability to incorporate additional Hikvision Speed Dome and IP Megapixel Cameras; which is expected in the near future. As Mr. Solano summed up, it is this "positive effect on protection of the citizens of Magdalena City" and a higher level of overall comfort that is leading the way to a more secure Argentina.