Building Management

A Love Letter to Ugly Buildings

My Dear Building,

People think you are UGGGLY!!! Look at you, sitting there in this residential neighbourhood behind a cheap chain-link fence, complete with tacky Golden Retriever ornaments. Your paint is old, your roof is basic tar shingles, and you lack even the most basic adornment of windows. Walking up to you I can hear your twin DX Cooling units panting in the heat like an old hunting dog in a Southern summer. Strolling by I am sure nobody compliments you and some residents might even consider you an eyesore.

Dearest building, those people are judging you on your looks when they only see your skin. Forget them, because you my dear are gorgeous. I feel cheap not showing up with flowers. People think you are unsightly but I look at you and swoon, my heart racing. I know that you aren’t some ordinary shed but rather a high-margin opportunity owned by a multi-billion dollar organisation.

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Look at you Ugly Building!

Cracking open your door I am greeted by a blast of cool, well-conditioned air caressing my face and racks of electronic equipment delight my eyes. You are one of millions. A telecom shed like many others across the country and you are exactly what I want to see. Like so many small buildings you have only the basics, no fancy monitoring. Those DX Units run all day every day, whether they need to or not, sucking up energy and getting written off as a cost of business. That neglect, my dear building, makes you and all your siblings costly energy black holes. With SmartStruxure Lite (SSL) we are going to take care of you. 

Now Sweetheart, let’s talk SSL for a second because, like you, it isn’t elegant and or pretty. Sure our Marketing Department can gussy SSL up and make it look glossy and fresh, but anybody working with the product that has tried building a graphic or dove into complex system integrations will tell you SSL is an UGLY little controller. However, that rough image is only skin deep and just like you SSL is incredible.

Schneider Electric MPM

A testament to the reduction of component size.

People that use SSL can get themselves into trouble by treating SSL as full blown building controller, like a Jace or Automation Server. Complicated scripts without learning the LUA programming language make it tough to work with. Sure, our total lack of email alarming and the manual selection of values seem backwards, but let me tell you why we are the right fit for you.

Here is what we did for you, my concrete darling. We tore out those cheap, old thermostats and replaced them with state of the art SE8650U0B11 Room Controllers. They communicate wirelessly to an MPM-UN-EI4-5045 Universal Controller. Onboard that MPM there is a real simple program where we locked out the keypads to the Room Controllers so roving technicians can’t mess with your setpoints, throwing you out of whack. We staged your DX units so that the newer, more efficient unit handles the cooling load instead of both units. Your second DX Unit only comes on during those really hot days when the first unit can’t keep up. Only one of your units needs to have the fan going 24/7 so we dropped the other unit’s fan into auto to extend the mechanical service life of the unit.

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Brand new touchscreens to enable easy service.

We know SSL doesn’t handle email well, but that doesn’t matter since you don’t have an Ethernet drop. Let me tell you what we did to solve both our lack of Ethernet and our emailing dilemma. We used two simple auto dialers, each connected to a Binary Output on the MPM. When a minor or major alarm hits, the signal is sent out and we have a service tech on his way to take care of you.

Auto_Dailer

Simple programs enable high tech solutions!

And just like that you went from being a drain on resources that got written off as a cost of business to being a very important and addressable concern. Both you and SSL might get written off but together, you are a match made in heaven. You have all the hallmarks of a desirable project, quick, easy and repeatable. Trust me, I can’t wait to help our partners bring this solution to all your siblings across the country because you sweetheart, are a Super Cool Building!

Do you know and love and ugly building? Leave us a link to a photo in the comments below!

Note: A big “Thank You” to Kratos Public Safety & Security for introducing me to this Ugly Building


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