The construction should begin by June 1 to start the installation of a comprehensive city-wide security system that will ultimately result in license plate readers and cameras at all entrances (and exits) to the City of West University Place.
Some cities have extensive camera systems, but West U’s complete and total system appears to be the first in America that will provide a security chain around its entire border. This is expected to be an effective crime-solving tool and also deter people from entering West University Place with vice in mind.
The $4.5 million price tag will come in two construction phases. The first will install cameras at 16 locations and Phase II installing cameras at the remaining 24 locations. In order to minimize the number of cameras installed, the locations are being strategically selected to cover all access points into the city with the fewest cameras, meaning that some of the cameras will be installed outside of West U’s city limits.
Because of advances in technology and an increasing competitive vendor marketplace, the city administration is confident the project will come in comfortably under budget.
The cameras are passive – meaning they aren’t monitored, and the images captured by the system create a searchable database of license plates numbers that can be used by the police department to help narrow possible leads for crimes in the area, as well as, help notify patrol officers of stolen vehicles, amber alerts and more as these become available.
After completion, the system is expected to have a $360K annual operational cost.