Going underground for Gateshead's Advantex in contract win

Plans to improve security and IT services for the historic Tyne pedestrian and cyclist tunnels have been given the green light as part of an extensive refurbishment project.

The move will see Gateshead technology specialist Advantex Network solutions provide a new IP infrastructure in an undisclosed six-figure contract, which will involve the installation of water-resistant fibre optic emergency cabling to span the 270m length of the Grade-II listed structure.

The work, which is already underway, will see a new network infrastructure implemented by Advantex that will allow for the connectivity of IP security systems, telephony and other IT services.

The technology is part of a package of improvements being under taken by owners Joint Transport Committee, which represents the North East and North of Tyne combined authorities to provide fast, reliable and cost-effective IP cameras, access control and communications systems for the tunnels, which are currently being refurbished. New concrete floor paving slabs are also being installed to provide a better surface for cyclists and pedestrians.

The Advantex contract will also include onsite and remote technical back up and annual health checks for all network hardware and software. This will allow the firm to upgrade the system to accommodate any future user requirements.

Using IP technology will also enable surveillance equipment to be specified and designed to improve operational management, particularly around tunnel safety and security.

Alastair Swan at Newcastle City Council said the 20,000 people a month who use the tunnel will benefit from new levels of safety and security.

He added: “This is an important investment for us, providing not only a technology-based deterrent but also delivering assurances that our customers will be in a safe and secure environment.

“Advantex’s proven experience in designing and delivering technology solutions for demanding operational conditions, together with cost effective aftercare, also impressed.”

The tunnels’ contract is the latest success for the £7m turnover firm, which currently employs almost 60 people at its Follingsby Park-based head office and recently marked 15 years since being established.

Tony Easingwood, account manager at Advantex, said: “We’re seeing continued demand for IP-based solutions. These allow our clients to migrate from out-dated systems to new digital security and telecoms technologies that operate from remote and secure sites.

“We are continuing to work with leading North East businesses to help them improve their operations through the provision of quality advice and network infrastructure services.”

Advantex, established in 2002, achieved the prestigious ISO9001/2000 industry quality mark within its first year of trading and holds the IOS9001/2015 mark as well as IIP. It is a Cisco Premier, Microsoft, and Mitel Silver accredited partner, providing a single source managed services package, which combines to deliver flexibility, added value and cost saving benefits.

More at www.advantex.uk.com