AggieAccess: Key-Card Systems Will Be Retrofitted

Gunrock holds AggieAccess card.
Gunrock shows one of the new AggieAccess cards in photo illustration by Henri Teixiera, photographer, and Liz Corkery, graphic artist, with Katie Hetrick as the mascot.

A retrofit project will bring the new AggieAccess system to more than 160 buildings and other locations on the Davis campus.

All of the project locations already have electronic access controls — but there are different systems in use. In the retrofit, all of the systems will be standardized and connected to the campus Police Department’s communications center, where dispatchers will:

  • Remotely monitor the systems, to know if someone forces open a door or tries to gain entry to an area where they are not supposed to be.
  • Control access quickly — by revoking or granting access privileges — in an emergency.

“We are significantly upgrading our access controls to protected areas, with a more efficient, centralized system for improved security” Police Chief Joe Farrow said.

No new electronic access systems are being added. However, if more systems are installed in the future, AggieAccess will incorporate them.

The Police Department is taking the lead on the retrofitting, working with more than 30 departments around the campus, and will manage the software and compliance. Individual buildings will continue to manage distribution of their own key cards — and key-card managers will have better tools to set the parameters of each card.

Beta testing starts in October

The retrofits are scheduled to begin in October with beta testing at the  Police and Fire departments. Additional retrofits will be rolled out over the next year, and each location will have plenty of advance notice to prepare. As each location is completed, employees will receive new access cards, which will double as campus IDs.

“As we know more about which locations will be updated and when, we will be in close contact with the electronic key-card managers responsible for the building or area,” said Susan Collopy, project manager with Design and Construction Management.

The downtime involved in these upgrades will be minimal, said Jeff Rott, director of security with the Police Department. “Still, the safety of our people, research and equipment is of the utmost importance. So, if needed, we are prepared to work with our community, on a case-by-case basis, to provide additional security as the retrofits occur.”

Project leads will work directly with departmental key-card managers to train them on the new system, as they will continue to have the ability to grant and revoke access. As each location is retrofitted, occupants will be informed of the process of swapping their existing key cards for AggieAccess cards.

The project webpage includes FAQs and as well as a subscription link for email updates. Information on how to get new access cards will be added to the page in the coming weeks, along with training videos for key-card managers.

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