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Ascend Five Points, Birmingham, AL

Brand new 17 story luxury Student Housing property in downtown Birmingham, Alabama. The property features 198 large student apartments as well as many indoor and outdoor amenity spaces including rooftop lounge and pool. Each apartment also included large screen smart TVs which were to be connected to the video network as well as the Internet.

The Problem
We were one of many vendors to bid on the project and won out based on services and pricing. There really wasn’t a problem other than the very short time from signed agreement until student move in day in addition timelines were compressed by Covid-19 site shutdowns and safety protocols. Even with these roadblocks service was up and running across the property when the residents moved in.

Dojo Networks Solution
We worked with the builder and contractor prior to construction to make sure all of the low power wiring was installed to proper specifications. The goal of the project was to provide building-wide managed WiFi in all of the units and common spaces such as the lobby, gym, pool and study/lounge areas. We engineered and installed a cloud managed Ruckus WiFi system along with Ruckus ICX switches. The property also has a guest network for short term usage by guests and an internal network for IoT building sensors. The backbone is provided by via 10gb fiber to the Internet backbone.  We were given access to the data closets just a few weeks before the building opened for occupancy and were able to have the network up and operational for the residents. Due to the height of the building 17 stories, we needed to deploy fiber from the Main Data room on the first floor with redundant fiber to each IDF (currently running at 10gb/s) that we built out on every other floor. We built every other floor so that it reduced the number of data closets which reduce the capital costs as well as the points of potential for the building. As part of this project we also deployed a TV system which provides for Bulk TV including all local and sports channels and a vast channel lineup all in HD. No setup boxes are required and the TV will work plugged into any standard HD TV. In addition to the usual battery backup systems, we made sure that all of the networking equipment was powered by the site generator so that even in the event of a power outage the internet and WiFi calling will continue to work.

The Results
Onboarding of the residents went very smoothly with almost no tickets or trouble calls even in a brand new deployment. The property wide WiFi system works so that each apartment has their own unique code to join the WiFi so that each apartment has their own secure network or Private Area Network (PAN) allowing for shared devices and IoT, such as Apple TVs, Roku, Alexa and more to work seamlessly throughout the entire apartment complex but still in their own secure private network keeping residents information and devices secured.
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