Cell Coverage in the “Life Above”

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Panoramic views, impeccable designer finishes and resort inspired amenities – this is the world of Parq on Speer Apartments, the newest (and some say priciest) luxury high-rise residences in Denver.

Their tagline is “Welcome to the Life Above” and they aren’t just referring to their 16-story perspective. The Parq on Speer also rises above the pack when it comes to style, amenities and the services offered, such as Wolf and Sub-Zero appliances and wine refrigerators, a penthouse Sky Lounge, smart home technology, a 24/7 concierge, even a “Barq Parq” and pet spa for the furry residents.

Now, thanks to Illuminati Labs, one of the vital amenities the Parq on Speer provides is powerful cell phone coverage throughout every floor, even the garage levels.

Some apartment buildings only provide cell service for their penthouse suites or administrative areas but not Parq on Speer — they went the whole nine yards and covered the entire building. Their solution ensures ALL of their tenants can make calls, text, and use data while also allowing complete connectivity for their building’s automation system which runs on the cellular network.

This kind of thoughtfulness regarding their tenants is what prompted Parq management to make an unusual demand regarding their interior site survey: don’t do it. See, the Parq’s survey was scheduled to take place in what turned out to be the first week of the Coronavirus shutdown and for the sake of their residents and staff, they did NOT want us inside their building.

Normally, when we do a survey it consists of walking the entire building, inside and out, rooftop to lowest underground level, taking coverage readings in order to formulate a “heat map” – a map showing the weak and strong spots of the current coverage. With this map, we can determine how much signal is available for us to bring inside and how best to design and execute the cell repeater system. But amid the COVID-19 quarantine, both Parq management and Illuminati Labs felt that keeping everyone isolated was the most important factor so it was decided that we would design our system sight unseen (or should I say ‘site’ unseen?).

Fortunately, because we have done several other projects in the area and are very familiar with the local cellular environment and tower locations, we knew that a cell enhancement system would drastically help the cellular coverage inside and we were able to design a solid solution without taking indoor readings.

Once the system was designed, our next challenge was to get it installed safely during quarantine. We made a joint decision with the Parq management team to limit technicians in the building wherever possible, and prevent any unnecessary contact with tenants/guests/employees. We proceeded with caution, using the “rules of engagement” for our team that we had previously implemented at our Batley project in Washington, DC. These rules outlined how to best conduct ourselves and ensure the safety of our customers and workers. To minimize contact while residents were getting accustomed to our presence, we started our installation in the garage levels. This was a treat because the entire Illuminati Labs team is made up of car lovers and the cars of Parq on Speer gave them plenty to salivate over!

Gradually we made our way up to the residential floors, using every pandemic precaution – masks, hand sanitizer, hand washing, tool cleaning and complete social distancing. Occasionally, a curious resident would peek out from behind a door to ask what we were doing in their hallway but as soon as they heard we were supplying much-needed cell service to the building they would give us an appreciative thumbs up and retreat back into their isolation.

It seems the pandemic has reminded everyone of is the importance of being able to communicate. When we are in lockdown, all the amenities and frills in the world can’t measure up to the luxury of being able to place a simple phone call to a loved one. Illuminati Labs is grateful to be able to deliver that luxury again.