Pedestrian gates fulfil a simple but essential purpose wherever they are erected. Most commonly they are designed to serve as a point of entry to or from a space that is enclosed by a wall, a fence, or a boundary of some sort. The pedestrian gate design stands to inhibit pedestrian access specifically in a controlled fashion, but did you know there is much more to them than just that? In this article we tell you everything you need to know about pedestrian and security gates.
What is a pedestrian gate?
Pedestrian gates are used all around the world for a variety of reasons and in a variety of places. They can differ substantially in design and functionality, depending on the use case in question. However, they all generally provide convenience in easing access while acting as a layer of security to everything from the front of commercial and residential properties, while sufficing as an added feature that can complement the home and its design.
The design of the pedestrian gate is typically big enough for one or several persons to fit through at a time, but small enough that typical vehicles cannot. The most common and probably most well-known form of a pedestrian gate is the one placed in a fence or a wall that allows people in and out of a specific place. For example, homes in cities, especially in South Africa, that are surrounded by fencing for privacy and security, often require or call for a pedestrian gate to be installed.
How pedestrian and security gates operate can also differ from one gate to another, depending on how they are installed and, of course, what the customer’s preferences in operation and design are. In terms of opening, closing, and locking gates, they can be managed in several ways that all differ in degrees of convenience and/or security. They range from simple latches that keep the gate in its position to being secured by a traditional lock and key, electromagnetic locks, or through automation methods such as opener remotes.
Functions of a pedestrian gate
The main function of these gates is to serve as a controlled accessway between one place and another. With the proper measures in place, a pedestrian gate is the main point at which the owner of a property or manager of a property can control who can access that property or premises. The need for these gates increases in environments where there is high foot traffic that enters and exits premises such as complexes, business parks, warehouses, and factories.
In places such as these, a pedestrian gate makes a lot of sense as there is better control of the entrees and departures, but it also aids in taking the pressure of bigger roller gates that make use of a motor to open and close. Further pressure is taken off the motor, and especially the battery, when load shedding or any other power outages is as prevalent as they are in South Africa. In the long run, having a pedestrian gate can be a noteworthy investment, not only in saving on gate motors but on security as well.
As a secondary function, a pedestrian gate can be used as a way to increase the beauty of your home if the gate is custom designed to complement your home’s style. At the same time, this can increase the value of the property as the front of the home essentially makes the first impression on potential buyers, especially when it matches with the driveway or main gate.
Types of pedestrian gates
Pedestrian gates can refer to a wide array of different gates that serve as accessways for visitors to a specific place. It is to this extent that with different types, styles, and designs of gates, the options are virtually endless. If you’re considering a pedestrian gate but are stuck at settling on or finding a design, take a look at some of our past work for some first-class inspiration.
Residential pedestrian gates
A residential pedestrian gate is probably the most recognisable and well-known form of pedestrian gate. A pedestrian gate at a residential home is normally designed to allow persons into a property, or from one point of the property to another, through a narrow entryway. It’s a functional and practical addition to any residence which can also add to the aesthetics of a home and its boundary. And as such, the types and designs to them are virtually endless.
These gates quite literally come in all shapes and sizes. Conventionally, pedestrian gates are that of door height but in many cases, they can be lower such as hip height. The gate can still act as a barrier, but someone can simply jump over the gate if they wanted to. Taller gates are therefore designed to keep people from jumping over, or at least, make it a tad more difficult to do so. This style may be used when security is a major concern, i.e. in South Africa, or when the area behind the gate is private and the owner does not want people to be able to see what’s going on behind it.
Although they’re not exactly our thing, turnstiles are a type of pedestrian gate that is widely used all over the globe in commercial and public spaces where a lot of people traffic is present. In most cases, the traffic, or the people, need to be controlled and/or counted to determine the visiting capacity while, normally, at the same time only allowing passage when a charge is taken, or predetermining factors are met.
Turnstiles are suitable for controlling access in environments such as reception areas, health clubs, theme parks, public buildings, factories, stadiums, and transit stations like subways, bus terminals, and train stations. They are convenient because they easily allow authorised entry of one person at a time while being able to deny unauthorised entry completely autonomously. Companies can thus save money by installing a pedestrian turnstile access control system because it eliminates the need for physical attendants at the entryways.
Types of turnstiles
These are turnstiles that are waist-high in height and can also be called half-height turnstiles. Usually, an electronic key, bar-coded ticket, tag, or a pass is used to open the barrier.
Optical Barrier Turnstiles
Optical turnstiles use optical sensors as opposed to physical barriers to prevent unauthorised access. If the system detects unauthorised entry, it can sound an alarm to prompt the security personnel to step in. These turnstiles are in places where using a physical barrier is deemed unaesthetic or unnecessary such as office buildings, hotel lobbies, and sports stadiums.
Drop Arm or Tripod Turnstiles
These turnstiles usually have a tripod or drop arm barrier that can be used in combination with optical sensors. They could have single, double, or triple arm barriers and can be found at train stations, bus terminals, airports, public parking lots, and parks.
Sliding Barrier Turnstiles
These turnstiles are waist-high and have sliding flaps that move back and forth into the sliding space. The smart design of glass flaps and their working principle makes these turnstiles the go-to for aesthetic enhancement indoors such as in hotels and other lobbies.
Swing Barrier Turnstiles
Swing-barrier turnstiles are half-height turnstiles that also have optical sensors and swing barriers made from high-quality stainless steel or reinforced glass. These turnstiles can be integrated with ticketing systems that can be incorporated with control management systems. When the sensors detect a valid entry pass electronically with sensors or bar codes. the barriers swing open to allow a person to pass.
Full-height turnstiles have their barriers extending all the way up to normal door height, in the range of seven feet from the floor. These turnstiles function in the same way as revolving doors with the exception of accessing authorised persons one at a time and thereby preventing unauthorised access.
Differences between turnstiles and pedestrian gates
Although turnstiles are great for controlling access in places automatically and they do provide a great barrier of security in those places, they are not the most practical in residential settings such as at the home. For that, we will always advise conventional pedestrian gates like the types of gates we design and install.
For the home, pedestrian gates aren’t just a more practical alternative, but they’re also a far more cost-effective solution. Installation is easier as there are minimum disruptions to the ground-works, apart from the individual posts that need to be erected to operate the gates off of.
Reasons to get a pedestrian gate at home
You may not have realised it, but there are several reasons to have a pedestrian gate installed at your home that extend beyond just the security aspect, although that is a significant (and popular) one. Let’s take a look at what some of the rest of them are:
Keeping pets and children enclosed
When you need to keep the little wanderers that are your children and pets from exploring places that they’re not supposed to, a pedestrian gate is a logical addition. The gate will keep your kids or pets from restricted areas while not restricting access to the area permanently. This can bring peace of mind especially when things such as a swimming pool or road traffic are involved.
Adding to the home’s aesthetics
A good quality and well-designed pedestrian gate will enhance the curb appeal of your home while ensuring that the focus of your property’s exterior will create a positive impression. So, when a time comes to sell, you know that potential buyers won’t be put off by external factors, but rather intrigued by it.
At Glow Innovations, we can help in this sense with our massive range of standard and customisable pedestrian gates on offer. This means that settling on a gate/s that complements the rest of your home’s exterior is easier than ever before. Furthermore, we can design gates to perform the practical function of tastefully covering up eyesores such as water tanks, sheds, bin spaces, mechanical equipment, or gas storage spaces.
Reducing your home insurance costs
A good security setup means lower insurance and a properly installed pedestrian gate is an essential part of that. The more secure your home is, the less likely it will be for thieves and burglars to want to break in. That means less risk and less risk should mean fewer insurance claims. And that is something that will please your insurance provider and they may reward you with lower premiums.
Over and above pedestrian gates increasing security and accessibility of your home, Glow Innovation products are highly durable while being affordable. Our gates are made using mild steel that is galvanised making it corrosion-resistant and virtually maintenance-free. For further peace of mind, we can recommend primers and top coats to extend the life even further. light-weight and less expensive than other products like steel.
The installation of pedestrian gates can be reasonably straightforward for anyone with a basic to moderate knowledge of DIY should be able to do it themselves. It’s for this reason, and in an attempt to save costs to you we offer our products with and without the option of installation. We like giving our clients control like that.
That being said, installing your gate yourself is not for the faint of heart or the inexperienced. So, if you do find the prospect of DIY foreign or intimidating, just know that we’re always here to help. You are welcome to reach out to us at any time for assistance and/or advice for installing your pedestrian gate yourself.