Local governments are taxed with providing services and being accountable to their electorate and one of the fundamental challenges to address is ensuring the electorate’s voice is being heard. The Regional District of East Kootenay, British Columbia has an even greater challenge in that it services several districts and rural areas. The decision was made to create an impressive new meeting space for the use of committees and the public.
The result of this initiative is the RDEK’s new boardroom, an impressive 60 X 90 foot space featuring 17 foot ceilings with a separate gallery area. Local company Rocky Mountain Media won the RFP bid for the AV installation. Owner John Siega was able to secure the contract because his proposal allowed for the integration of the existing audio equipment from the old boardroom, as specified in the RFP. New video equipment had to integrate with an older audio system. Siega explains: “As an overview I installed a retractable main screen, ceiling mounted and vibration isolated projector, two 52″ TV monitors, a distributed sound system for the entire room. The system was divided into two basic control zones (the main boardroom and a gallery area) with two sub zones for the main boardroom area using both ceiling and front loaded JBL speaker systems. The project also included installation of a conference phone system integrated into the sound system. Another key was the integration of lighting and window blind controls all controlled from a Crestron DMPS 3000 controller and operated via a Crestron wireless touch pad.”
Making use of existing equipment presented a particular challenge for Siega as most of the audio equipment from the old boardroom was not up to standard for the size and functionality of the new space. “The acoustic treatment of the room was key to allowing this to happen. The boardroom consists of 32 mics and 2 zones of speakers that must accommodate phone conference calls, so reducing room echo was a top priority and a must if the room was to meet its functional needs.”Siega’s acoustic treatment plan included product from Primacoustic’s Broadway line of professional grade acoustic panels. “I placed the panels throughout the room to help reduce echo in the large open spaces above the board room floor. The room is mostly hard surfaces, mainly wallboard, glass but with lightly carpeted flooring. The panels were installed to mimic the window layout by using both stock beige fabric wrapped 12X48 and 24X48 panels. They are fixed to the walls with Primacoustic impalers which makes for efficient and easy installation.”
“The most pleasing aspect was that I was able to control the room echo to allow proper function of the room using outdated audio equipment while integrating the acoustic panel install into the lines of the room so it looks like it was part of the original design. The end result is a fully integrated A/V and acoustic treatment job that allows the room to meet all its needs without upgrading the audio system to a digital mix/minus type system. We were able to meet the demands of the RFP to reuse as much of the old audio equipment as possible. The room simply would not be able to function as need be without the acoustic treatment.”