Casa Costa Condominiums Enhance Security, Boost Energy Efficiency
Casa Costa is a mixed-use condominium and commercial property located at the heart of the waterfront district in Boynton Beach, Florida. The community enjoys a diverse population of family residents, retirees and seasonal population occupying 407 total units – 395 residential and 12 commercial.
Casa Costa faced an end-of-life legacy security system that was challenging to maintain at a reasonable expense. Because a majority of the community residents are not present at the property year-round, access control credentials were not easy to update or distribute. Furthermore, neither the existing security system nor the out-of-date HVAC systems integrated with the building management system (BMS), so managing the facility with the seasonal load and population by leveraging the access control system was not possible. “We knew there was a way to achieve enhanced security and safety, energy efficiency and overall convenience for building occupants, and needed a service provider with the necessary experience and background to guide us,” says Danilo Cajina, Maintenance Engineer, Castle Group.
Alpha Security and Fire Alarm Services, Inc., along with LenelS2 and parent company Carrier Global Corporation, presented a fully integrated solution to provide Casa Costa with the confidence to operate a safer, more efficient facility. The three-phase project addressed security, HVAC and building management.
Alpha Security took on the first phase of the project, installing a LenelS2 NetBox™ access control system that utilized much of the existing panel hardware, causing minimal disruption to the community and residents as well as providing major cost savings. “For Casa Costa it was important that we capture all of the information in their current system and seamlessly bring it over to the new system – the NetBox solution made that possible,” says Brian Pinnock, President, Alpha Security. “None of the seasonal residents needed to be recredentialed. Their access control keys and fobs just continued to work,” adds Cajina.
The access control system integrates with existing door and elevator readers as well as a secure garage parking management system. The facility is now also able to control access to shared spaces including a gym and swimming pool on the fifth floor. Because shared spaces are now within the scope of the access control system, the facility is able to easily revoke access to communal areas if any resident self-reports as COVID-positive, helping to maintain a healthy facility.
For the HVAC portion of the project, Carrier provided critical guidance, making it possible for Casa Costa to become significantly more energy efficient. Due to equipment limitations, the facility’s previous HVAC system was operating at full power no matter how many people were present. “Carrier helped us find the most appropriate HVAC equipment solutions for our situation, thereby saving us total install costs, equipment maintenance costs, and overall lifecycle costs,” states Dan Flaherty, HOA Treasurer, Casa Costa Condominium Association.
The final phase of the project included programming and commissioning of the building management system, which allows building systems and data to be managed by the BACnet® i-Vu® building automation system controllers. The integrated system utilizes LenelS2 NetBox access control data, like building or room occupancy, for greater efficiency. “We always attempt to operate a building as efficiently as possible without sacrificing occupant comfort – the project at Casa Costa exemplifies that approach,” explains Matt Crawford, Project Manager, Controls, Carrier.
Casa Costa has truly transformed under the hood to become a more secure and efficient facility, all while enhancing the resident experience.
“With the new HVAC and Building Management gains, the facility is able to operate its equipment at appropriate levels based on seasonal variance, leading to 25% increased efficiency during peak season and upwards of 50% during the off season. Not only are we in a more secure facility now, our energy costs will decrease each year due to our equipment operating more efficiently,” notes Flaherty.