Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Planners Are Urged to Tighten Up on Security

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Planners Are Urged to Tighten Up on Security

Article excerpt

Byline: By Nadia Clark

Planners and architects have been urged by the Government to tighten up security in our town centres and on our streets.

Crime prevention minister Hazel Blears and planning minister Keith Hill were in King's Cross, London, yesterday to launch a good practice guide called Safer Places: The Planning System and Crime Prevention.

According to the ministers, safer streets can be achieved through well thought-out design and planning and the Government guide demonstrates how developers, planners and architects can contribute in making parks, homes and streets more secure.

Over the past few years, huge investment has been made in the North-East to ensure that our streets are safer. For example, pounds 12.9m has been allocated by the Government towards the costs of new CCTV equipment in the North-East as well as a pounds 3.5m investment in 2003/4 to the Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships.

In addition, 24 projects in the North-East, worth pounds 1.5m, are being funded to cut burglary and secure property under the Reducing Burglary Initiative and two projects in the North-East are being funded under the Targeted Policing Initiative to a total value of nearly pounds 375,000. Both are intended to tackle the problems of crime in rural Northumberland and include provision of a mobile police station and CCTV system.

The practice guide is an accompaniment to PPS6 Planning for Town Centres which was published as a consultation draft on December 15, 2003.

The key messages of the planning statement are a re-emphasis of the "town centres first" objective, in addition to local authorities positively planning for growth in town centres and to tackle social exclusion through ensuring access to a wide range of everyday goods and services.

Keith Hill was quoted as saying: "We are determined to build thriving, sustainable communities and that means places where people feel safe. …

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