As Covid-19 swept NYC, it became clear that the city’s real estate industry was under-equipped to deal with the pandemic. Even the most high-tech towers had no way to screen for symptoms. Keeping tenants safe meant closing doors.
Now, as NYC prepares to reopen, building owners are turning to a cutting-edge product that will safeguard their investments and get America back to work.
“In a significant office building, you typically walk into a tall, beautiful lobby,” explains Avi Polischuk. Polischuk is the mechanical engineer behind Checkpoint – a touch-free, thermal scanner that speeds up security while taking a user’s temperature. “You walk up to the security desk and give them your driver’s license, and they give you an ID badge that gets you past a turnstile. Do we really want someone to get past the security desk if they have a fever?”
Like the automated photo booths that sped up traveler entry at airports, Checkpoint allows workers and visitors alike to enter a building quickly. Entrants put their face in front of a sleek tablet which takes their temperature. Additionally, the monitor is able to be integrated with access to the elevators, doors and turnstiles.
This futuristic tech gives building owners and managers the seamless ability to screen out guests or delivery people with fevers, and protect amenity spaces. Checkpoint is poised to pop up everywhere, from sprawling commercial towers and condo buildings to schools and dorms.
“Having your temperature read is just a common courtesy in today’s world,” says Checkpoint co-owner Jason Greene.
Greene is also the third generation owner of a firm that manufactures some of the most prominent lighting systems in America, including those on the George Washington Bridge, Manhattan’s Central Park, and the 59th Street Bridge.
“If someone has a fever, it’s not the time to allow that person drop off a package, visit a friend, go to class or attend a meeting. This technology is going to be at every reception desk, every gym, every package drop off, every airport terminal and every school in the city,” he said.
While there are other thermal scanning products on the market, Checkpoint is easily the most sophisticated due to its plug-and-play ability that integrates with every aspect of a building’s existing infrastructure.
“You can pull it out of the box, plug it in, and walk away knowing it will do its job and keep the property safe,” says Polischuk. Checkpoint’s lead engineer is also the man behind R&S United Services, which installs mechanical and HVAC systems for developers including Tishman Speyer, Zeckendorf and Two Trees in top buildings like One57, 520 Park and 56 Leonard. “It’s as simple or sophisticated as you need it to be,” he said of Checkpoint’s tech.
Magni-flood and R&S United Services recently joined forces to open Medic Air, a large scale N95 and surgical mask manufacturing operation capable of producing 3 million masks per month in New York!
“Our goal was to end to price gouging and bring much needed manufacturing and innovation back to the US,” says Greene. “We recognized that we can’t just sit back and bear witness. We have to have to take action, and the sooner we do that, the sooner we get the city back on track. The only way to achieve that with a long-term vision was to build a fully automated facility and that’s what we’ve developed. That’s why we want to make New York first: first for surgical masks, first for N-95 masks, first for effective technology.”
Their surgical masks, which feature a Statue of Liberty logo on the packaging are designated Level 3, the highest level for surgical. They are also affordable and accessible to more than just front line workers.
“Moving forward, if you have an office building and someone gets sick with Covid, what are you going to do?” asks Polischuk. “Are you going to shut down the whole building? The government can shut down the whole country, and they won’t hesitate to shut down your building if you aren’t able to screen potentially infectious people. We want buildings to be able to monitor for the health and safety of their tenants at every entrance. That’s why Checkpoint is essential to reopening New York’s incredible buildings and restarting our economy.”