January 2019

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Joe PattenaudeTherese Sullivan

EMAIL INTERVIEWTherese Sullivan and Joe Pattenaude

Therese Sullivan, Tridium’s Customer Marketing Leader and Joe Pattenaude, Director of Building Systems at Bedrock

Integration & Tagging at Bedrock Detroit

In early November, as Holiday decorations and the seasonal ice rink were starting to go up in Downtown Detroit, in a meeting arranged by Cochrane Supply’s Monika Lubas, Therese Sullivan, Tridium’s Customer Marketing Leader, traveled to the top of one of Woodward Avenue’s renovated 19th Century buildings to meet Joe Pattenaude, Director of Building Systems at Bedrock, a full-service real estate firm specializing in acquiring, developing, leasing, financing, and managing commercial and residential buildings. Here is the conversation that ensued:

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Sullivan:  I’ve heard other Bedrock Real Estate leaders describe what is happening here, but it is another experience to come to downtown Detroit and see all the new construction and major renovations happening. From the new Shinola Hotel to all the big office towers going up, and the many small retailers and restaurants attracting street traffic, it feels buzzing and vibrant here. Detroit is not the stereotype of an abandoned rust-belt city anymore. What is the Bedrock formula?

Pattenaude:  As always, Detroit is an energetic place with geographic advantages for growing a business. Young people that want an affordable urban lifestyle are attracted here. Canada is just over the bridge, so people have an international perspective. And, there is hockey! The cranes everywhere are the most obvious signal of the massive change underway. What you might not see at first glance is that we are creating an experience for everyone that comes to Detroit. We are designing operationally advanced facilities to help provide the feeling of excitement; something businesses want to be a part of and a place you might want to live.

SullivanWhat do you do to ensure a building infrastructure that supports the ‘operationally advanced facilities’ that new Detroiters are starting to expect?

Pattenaude:  When necessary, we renovate buildings from the inside out, starting with the implementation of top-of-the-line technology infrastructure. Niagara Framework provides the core of that.  We also use Niagara to integrate BMS data streaming with the Niagara Framework. This allows it to combine with data from other equipment and devices so that we have a centralized console to spin all this data into the valuable information that we need to build better and manage our properties.

SullivanI noticed in the Bedrock Detroit Smart Building Specification that you spell out clearly in the Installing Contractor Scope section (Point #7) “Tag all points as per Haystack Tagging Conventions.”  Then in the Master Integrator Scope section: “Verify all points have been integrated with all required points and tagged properly.” How is all that tagging and verifying working out for you?

Pattenaude:  Any contractor or integrator that works on a Bedrock project must tag what they are doing. We specify Haystack tagging to get all the naming to conform to one system. The biggest advantage of tagging is the ability to bake in associations. This allows us to look at any piece of equipment or device, an individual VAV, for example, and answer the questions ‘What systems are serving data to this asset?’ and ‘To what systems does this asset serve data?’

I measure the value delivered by tagging – and any of our investments into a better interface for building operational data – in terms of the efficiency of my team. This ROI is so much bigger than energy saving metrics. We are a core group of about seven controls & integration engineers managing the OT networks for Bedrock properties across the city. We don’t want our engineers to spend their time struggling with a controls system interface or resorting to printing out time-series logs and trying to interpret them manually. If we can make them more efficient through naming and tagging, and a user interface and analytics software that makes a point of the data obvious, we can make their work much more efficient. We measure that improvement in terms of reduced operational costs.

[an error occurred while processing this directive] SullivanDo the financial managers at Bedrock agree that this is a good way to measure ROI?

Pattenaude:  Yes, they get it for the most part. If I get pushback, it is not about the value of enforcing our Smart Building specification for new construction or for a major controls retrofit; rather there might be questions about the need to invest in the integration work to bring the data from all our existing parking garages into our central building data system. Consider that last week-end we had a time-change for Daylight Savings Time. Those events can trigger a lot of calls about scheduling problems with parking garage equipment. Getting garages tagged and integrated is work that will pay for itself in two such time changes.

SullivanYou mentioned that your team is overseeing OT networks in buildings. Where do you stand on the question of running operational data over the same IP network as the IT data that runs enterprises?

Pattenaude:  One of Bedrock’s first Detroit properties was One Campus Martius. Understanding how to optimize an IT network for banking applications is how Quicken Loans catapulted into its current position as the largest retail lender in the US. I don’t want my operational data needs to be at the mercy of a network designed for banking. OT and IT are completely different applications. While every operational asset across all properties will eventually be IP addressable, I need to be able to optimize the network for OT data.

SullivanSo just to sum up, where do you think you are on this OT journey?

Pattenaude:  Over 2017 and 2018, my focus was on building a controls and data integration platform that would make my team more efficient in its role of managing our OT networks.  My plan for 2019 is to focus on the rollout of this integration platform and OT data to the facilities teams at each property to make them more efficient. From there, I would like to open our OT data to tenants and retailers, which would ultimately lead to better business outcomes.

For more information on Haystack visit Project Haystack Update article.


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