Commercial Opportunities: Making Amenity Space Design Pay Off
"Having prior experience at several amenity spaces was a big plus in helping develop the scope and scale of the project," explains Montgomery. "It was a lot more labor-intensive than a standard residential job," he observes, pointing out that a deep degree of coordination with other disciplines involved in the construction and design was an imperative.
"With multiple trades impacting the space, it was important to have very regular communications and follow-up on the site," he says—and his team's attention to detail was key in what was ultimately achieved.
The top priority for EDG, says Montgomery, was to make the usability of all the built-in systems a no-brainer for residents of any age—and any technology skill set. "All the touchpanels are intuitive enough so that where multiple functions need to happen, they happen with one button. It's not at all intimidating. If someone wants audio, they touch a button and—boom!—it's on," he explains.
Another important consideration when EDG selected the gear it ultimately installed was the pedigree of the electronics, and their reputation for being bullet-proof. While ease of use was a paramount consideration, said Montgomery, so was low maintenance. He says the latter was "a key trait of this system. Since downtime would adversely affect all residents, the equipment had to be top quality and resilient for day-to-day use," because the area is accessed by many people.
EDG's ability to discern the caliber of the electronics component and control systems it selects is based in the firm's experience of having worked on hundreds of projects—a fact not lost on the building's owners and management. "We have an excellent rapport with the facilities we work on," says Montgomery.
The overall goal was to "create a synergistic balance between complex electronics and a system that is easy to use," says Montgomery. While the project took one year to complete, end to end, it takes a Laurel resident all of five minutes to be "wowed," in this extraordinary space. CR