London Business School 
Sammy Ofer Centre


Barco WeConnect

AMX Room Booking

NEC Touchscreens

This impressive transformation project has seen the Hounslow team involved with London Business School in the revamping of the Old Marylebone Town Hall into the new Sammy Ofer Centre.

The £2.7 million project, headed up by Kristian Cutting, involves input from the entire Hounslow team as well as Group Technical Director,
Dan Victory, and our dedicated Project Manager, Nigel Sharpe.

InAVate produced a comprehensive case study in their February 2018 issue, written by Editor, Paul Milligan. GVAV would like to thank Paul and the InAVate team for allowing us to reproduce those words and images here.

To do

Standardising AV over various spaces

The main focus for GV was to supply top class AV for over 50 teaching and meeting spaces, digital signage, boardrooms and eight new lecture theatres with a central control room, all spread across four floors and two buildings. Wherever possible, GV has tried to standardise the AV; as a result it often resembles a high-end corporate
office rather than a traditional educational establishment.

​​​​​​​The two flat-floor lecture theatres on the first floor are a great example of that. Both rooms seat 35 students in a flipped-classroom style, where the only thing fixed to the floor is the custom made Simon Kohn all-white desk. Each lecture theatre has its own custom-sized version of the desk and control system, all designed to be used quickly and easily by teaching staff. Each desk refines an existing design piloted successfully on other sites. The only AV the staff can see on the desk itself is a 24-in Dell touchscreen monitor and 20-in widescreen AMX touchscreen, while a standard PC is hidden underneath the desk.

Alongside the two screens behind the lecturer, these two flat-floor lecture theatres have AV split down the middle of the room; on each side is an 84-in SMART Kapp board, one 80-in NEC flat panel and one traditional whiteboard. This is so the students can break out into discussion groups and be near the technology wherever they sit.
The rooms are also set up for Skype for Business and a Panasonic PTZ camera runs into a Sonic Foundry Mediasite lecture capture system, as well as simultaneously providing for remote monitoring and Skype via IP and USB.

To do

AV throughout a listed building

In addition, all lecture theatres and seminar rooms have Barco WeConnect wireless mirroring. Outside each seminar room and lecture theatre are custom-made mounts for AMX room booking display screens to ensure a matched fit with other custom signage.

In another wing are the next four lecture theatres, holding 85 people in each, in beautiful wood-panelled rooms. Again, the AV mirrors the other lecture theatres - a white desk controls the AV on two Vutec 111-in or 123-in projection screens depending on room height available. The screens are served by two NEC 8,000 lumens laser projectors, hidden on hoists carefully integrated into the wooden slatted ceiling. The projector
screens are custom designed to allow them to be blended together to make one screen. For consistency with existing spaces the system permits the users to show two different pieces of content at the same time, side-by-side. Having two projectors also provides redundancy if one fails.

Monitoring of the lecture theatre AV technology is done via their main control room which uses in-room technology such as cameras and Mediasite, all routed via SVSi AV-over-IP technology (including a
multi-preview display of all lecture theatres simultaneously on a 65-in NEC display) to provide near-instant monitoring from any of the lecture spaces. AV control in this space allows quick and full remote control of the outlying spaces via AMX RMS software and an in-room 10-in AMX touchpanel. A pair of bookable Polycom conferencing units are also available to and from each lecture theatre and the main control room.

Flexibility in AV

Moving upstairs, you come to the biggest teaching space of all, a 200-seat lecture theatre, capable of being split into two exact 100-seat spaces. Innovation in this room comes in the form of two audio systems. Because this theatre is used for both lectures and as a Council Chamber, choosing the right microphones was difficult. In the end, to keep desks uncluttered, 36 Earthworks microphones drop down from the ceiling on Servoreeler retractors when needed.

The rooms, again, have the same desk control space, but also feature two NEC displays with Shadowsense touchscreen technology mimicking the projection for direct interaction and Telemetrics camera system for
Westminster and Business School uses. The Council now has the added ability to stream and record the event via a NewTek Tricaster.

Having worked alongside GV in the past, their ability to provide everything we needed in terms of the AV alone was without question. It was the requirement for flexibility and accommodation of other trades that would be the real test. I’m pleased to say they passed with flying colours. They’ve delivered everything we required and more in an extensive, uniform and future-proof system. With the whole GV team offsite and onsite supporting us and with the project team on hand to continuously liaise with other contractors throughout the building’s renovation, they showed adaptability and amicability in ensuring that our overall goal was achieved – not just the AV side of things.

Wayne Buttigeig

Head of Infrastructure and Media Services, London Business School