Buildings full of technology

Text: Jari Pihlajasaari

Jari Pihlajasaari

Is the heating on, why isn’t the air conditioning working in my apartment, is the water shut off? Oh no, my key isn’t working, and I can get home!

As Soihtu’s technical supervisor I am in charge of building service technology and the systems concerning the real estates. Very often, my daily work revolves around the above-mentioned questions. Many kinds of technical issues are part of every building.

Buildings have to be monitored regularly

At the moment, almost all Soihtu’s real estates are monitored by modern building service technology and next spring the last tower block in Kortepohja Student Village, Building E, will also be added to the list. However, the fact that a building is renovated, and the technology is renewed doesn’t mean that one can merely relax and feel good.

Modern building service technology requires constant monitoring so that the real estate and its devices work as planned. In general, the technology works automatically and the remote access control center controls regulations and gives alarms if necessary. If something isn’t working as it should, the alarms are sent to the company that is in charge of property maintenance and to me. In addition, manual checkups have to be done every week because the new and high-quality technology can also fail for one reason or another.

Saving as much energy as possible

Soihtu puts a lot of effort into energy saving with help of which the carbon footprint of electricity, water and district heat consumption is reduced. During the previous years, we have already made big investments to achieve our goals. Our work to reduce the carbon footprint is still going on.

Building service technology has been renewed by making different renovations. Heat recoveries for air conditioning have been installed in buildings and there are heat pumps in several real estates. This autumn we are taking another step forward by installing the first solar power station on the roofs of buildings H and J in Kortepohja Student Village.

We have been able to reduce water consumption by renewing indoor plumbing fixtures and by installing an alarm system for leaks in water meters. As an example, I could mention that the measures to save water that were started in 2014 have, to this day, saved approximately 90 000 m3 of water which is approximately 450 million glasses of water!

Functioning locks and keys

In the course of years, many different kinds of locks and keys have been in use in Soihtu’s real estates. With small steps we have renewed the locking systems. The reform has also included little challenges, but they haven’t stopped us from developing new ideas. The goal is to have most of the real estates in the same locking system during next year. A common looking system makes controlling them easier and makes it possible to use mobile keys in the future.

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