In 2019, after two years of building works, the London Borough of Hounslow moved from its old Civic Centre premises to Hounslow House, new purpose-built offices by Bell Square in the town centre. With a mission to work more effectively for the borough’s 270,000 residents, the new building was designed to be smaller, modern, energy efficient and economical to run. Hounslow House also incorporates the Hounslow Clinical Commissioning Group, police partners, the town’s library and new adult education classrooms.
As part of the new-build development, proAV was commissioned directly by the London Borough of Hounslow to create a stimulating, smart working environment by implementing a building-wide, integrated audio visual solution. The objective was to adopt new, more agile ways of working and multiple technology workshops and proof of concepts were held with Hounslow’s workforce to ensure user adoption progressed appropriately in readiness for the move.
As with any substantial new-build programme, the key challenge for proAV’s project teams was to coordinate seamlessly with the main contractor’s various on-site trades and their operations to ensure the client’s timescales were met. The entire project to relocate Hounslow’s workforce was carried out in a phased, floor-by-floor move, although fundamental to the success of proAV’s AV commission was the sound working relationship enjoyed with both Bouygues and the Council’s IT and Project Management team.
Since the AV scheme’s technologies had to run on the client’s new network and integrate with its meeting booking system and queue management system, it was imperative proAV’s project team worked closely with the Borough’s IT department to avoid complications and delays.
proAV’s AV scheme represented a site-wide scheme that would transform the London Borough of Hounslow’s working environment, its operational effectiveness and the relationship it has with its visiting public.
proAV’s AV solution was focussed on wireless presentation, conferencing and collaboration, the fast dissemination of information within a mission-critical environment and, crucially, the visitor experience. 70 meeting room spaces with two AV functional types, a flexible civic chamber with expansion to open out into associated function halls and an Emergency Control Centre that houses the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) were covered by the scheme. Its key technologies include stunning digital signage and IPTV network (60+ displays) to stream messages to staff and visitors on all floors via LED displays. Wireless presentation and collaboration in meeting rooms, a conference system with voting for chairman and delegates, LED Projection and a centralised AV control suite complete the solution. All technologies were fully commissioned to operate on the client’s network and integrate with its other technical systems.
A powerful arrangement of digital signage displays on all floors streams an array of messages and information to visitors and staff. A raft of meeting spaces enable guests and staff to connect and collaborate using any device via the wireless AV presentation platform. UC solutions were also deployed in the meeting rooms and integrated to the client’s Cloud Unified Communications service. The vast sixth-floor Civic Chamber and associated function halls offer professional delegate communication, conferencing and voting technologies with expansion capabilities for focused Council meetings and expandability to accommodate large functions as required.
The Emergency Control Centre, which serves as the MASH, is a mission-critical environment that now boasts an impressive video wall comprising six 55” displays in a 3x2 configuration with additional displays set around the space for bespoke presentation connectivity, video conferencing and distribution of media that can be conducted simultaneously. Elsewhere, interactive screens offer scope for impromptu collaborations and informal meetings.
LBH ICT Operations manager
Thanks to the close working relationship between proAV’s project team, the main contractor and the client’s internal IT team, the London Borough of Hounslow project proved to be an outstanding success and has, indeed, transformed the way the workforce operates and serves the town’s residents.
proAV’s scheme was successfully completed on time, within budget and was developed according to the exacting AV specification agreed with the London Borough of Hounslow IT team.
As a result of proAV’s meticulous approach and deployment of the overall scheme, proAV is now working with Slough Borough Council and main fit-out contractor, Bouygues, on a similar project in readiness for the move into its new £41m, 80,000 sq.ft. headquarters building in Windsor Road.