Ornate architecture and detail called for an IP video solution that would offer an effective yet discreet implementation to protect the historical architecture of the Palaces of Turkey.

One million tourists from all over the globe annually come to visit the extravagant treasures of Turkey. The Dolmabahce Palace in Istanbul is a main attraction, requiring a staff of 1,000 to run and maintain it – half of which are temporary workers. It is a challenge to monitor the access and passage of so many people throughout such a massive and important property in order to protect and preserve the historical buildings and irreplaceable artifacts.

The Department of National Palaces in Turkey has installed the first in a series of new security systems using open platform IP video management software and network cameras to solve their monitoring issues. The solution provides an effective yet discreet implementation to protect the historical architecture, and the ability to easily expand in the future.

An IP network-based security system was implemented in the Dolmabahce, the first of 12 palaces to get the solution. Here, Milestone IP video software is managing over 200 Axis surveillance cameras. The open platform of the solution also allows integration of the video system with fire detection and access control systems in the future.

The Dolmabahce Palace in Istanbul, Turkey has been outfitted with an IP video surveillance system.

“I did a lot of research before making the decision that IP was the way to go, and the solution has an open platform that gives us the long-term flexibility and scalability to get the most for the government’s investment. The national funds for this have to be spent with the greatest concern and vision,” says Rustem Coskun, IT manager for the Department of National Palaces of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey.

“Dolmabahce is a very big palace with visitors from all over the world, which brings security risks like vandalism. About 80 percent of our problems are internal, however. Things may not happen often but with irreplaceable national treasures, even once is too much,” said Coskun.

The majestic architecture of the Dolmabahce Palace covers over 110,000 square meters including all the connected buildings with state apartments, offices and the imperial harem. The main edifice has 285 rooms, 46 galleries, 6 Turkish baths and 68 lavatories. Glossy marble columns and steps lead to parquet floors laid with 4,454 square meters of handmade Turkish carpets. The interior is decorated with Ottoman Empire magnificence, reflecting the splendor of past Sultans. The crowning glory is the ceremonial hall: An imposing 2,000 square meters with 56 huge columns, a dome 36 meters high and a central chandelier weighing 4.5 tons.

The network cabling took several months in order not to damage any of the building’s precious architecture, ceilings or floors.

The Dolmabahce Palace security is now under full control. Live video viewing, both centrally and remotely, allows for the fastest response to any incidences. Easy searching and export of recorded evidence provides resolution of matters internally, with the police or insurance companies. Best of all, the open platform of IP video software ensures an optimal return on investment for national funds, as integration with access control, fire alarms and future technologies bring valuable interoperability and expansion capabilities.