Industry Update
Supplier News30 November 2012

Where is Your Technology Supplier When the Lights Go Out?

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Systems Associates, Inc.

When you enlist the services of Systems Associates Inc. for building automation and preventive maintenance, you get more than just hardware and software; You get a team dedicated to the success of your facility -- especially during a crisis! 
Bowling Green, Ohio — November 29, 2012 The 41-story 17 State Street building in lower Manhattan's Financial District was one of the first downtown office buildings in New York to restore services after the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. According to RFR Property Management, tenants were quickly able to reoccupy the building thanks in part to the herculean efforts of Systems Associates Inc. and the 29 other companies responsible for the building's many systems.

"We pumped 1.7 million gallons of water out of the basement level of 17 State Street immediately after the Hurricane," said Eric Towse, RFR's Chief Operating Engineer. "As we were doing so, we put out a 9-1-1 call to our automation partners. SAI mobilized a team of men and materials immediately. They built a new front-end system, packed up two cars, drove from Ohio to New York, and had boots on the ground within 24 hours. Equipment that was unaffected was up-and-running in a few short hours, while hardware that was destroyed by flood waters was completely replaced in a day or two. This was all possible because of SAI's customer commitment and their ability to re-establish and reintegrate building automation controls. This type of dedication is priceless."

Systems Associates Inc. is a developer of software and hardware solutions for maintenance and energy management in the hospitality, education, government, commercial real estate and retail markets. 17 State Street has been a satisfied SAI customer for more than 20 years.

"RFR Management has the utmost confidence in SAI," Towse said. "Recognizing the urgency of our situation, especially since all building controls are located in the cellar – which was completely submerged – they were first to respond and first on the scene. I cannot stress enough the importance of partnering with a technology supplier that you can count on. SAI President Dave Codding and his team are true professionals. We commend them on a job very well done."

17 State Street Property Manager Deloy Stoll concurred: "We went back to the stone age for a bit, until SAI came to the rescue. They never let us down at any turn. SAI made things happen that appeared to be impossible. They not only brought us hope, but they brought the building back to life. Reliability is at their core. Any company that has Systems Associates as a partner can rest assured knowing that in the event of a crisis – no matter how big – they will respond quickly and won't quit until service is restored."

Rapid Recovery

SAI recently upgraded the building controls infrastructure at 17 State Street, replacing OPTO-22 gear with a stand-alone intelligent DDC control system for HVAC.

"The systems installed at 17 state are designed to regulate and reduce energy use while maintaining tenant comfort," said John Clark, SAI director of sales and marketing. "SAI handles the controls for the core systems, as well as each of the tenant-specific build-outs on the floors. When Hurricane Sandy hit and 17 State began taking on water, the building's main program was lost, but due to the recent upgrade, we replaced the computer, restored the backup of the database, ran some new critical communications wire (anything that was under water) and the system was back up and running. This is the beauty of the new stand-alone intelligent controllers. They don't need to communicate with the main program in order to function."

Bringing 17 State Street back online was done quickly due to SAI's key technology advantages:

  1. Offsite backup– the database is automatically backed up weekly to an offsite location. In the case of 17 State Street, the system was backed up just prior to losing power, at a safe site hundreds of miles away.
  2. Rapid Deployment– SAI specializes in rapid deployment. The company's disaster recovery strategy allowing it to redeploy quickly, minimizing downtime of critical systems.
  3. Documentation– Detailed site documentation is stored offsite and available online to SAI customers, technicians and engineers.
  4. Remote Access– Each SAI customer site is capable of being accessed from anywhere worldwide. It's like having extra sets of hands/eyes when needed.
  5. Site Knowledge– SAI engineers and field technicians know each building intimately. Each member of the team knows the exact location of each panel.

"The rapid redeployment disaster recovery at 17 State Street is not the first time SAI has been called upon in an emergency," Clark said. "When Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005, the Hilton New Orleans was among the properties ravaged by the storm. SAI was ready, and helped restore critical systems to operation as quickly as possible. Sometimes emergencies are not based on natural disasters. When a strike in San Francisco threatened the operation of the Hilton San Francisco, SAI provided a team to support the property effectively running the building's critical HVAC systems for a period of about three weeks. Regardless of the type of emergency, SAI is ready to roll in support of our clients."

For more information on SAI, visit, or call 419-354-3900

About Systems Associates Inc.

Systems Associates Inc. is a developer of software and hardware solutions for Maintenance and Energy Management in the hospitality, education, government, commercial real estate and retail markets. Operating in the cloud, our enterprise solutions give our customers global access to our technologies. CONTROLIQ is an enterprise solution for Heating, Ventilating and Cooling (HVAC), lighting, irrigation and other building systems. SynergyMMS improves the condition of a property by creating "synergy" between the various departments involved in the maintenance process thereby increasing the productivity of staff and the longevity of assets. For more information on SAI and/or its CONTROLIQ and SynergyMMS solutions, visit,, and respectively, or call 1-800-433-9855.

David Codding
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