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Creating Safer Public Spaces – Security By Design & CPTED in Ukraine

 

Do You feel safe enough in public spaces?

With more and more individuals living in cities, our municipalities must support healthy inhabitants. The coronavirus has brought attention to the importance of physical activity in urban populations to reduce comorbidities such as diabetes, hypertension, and obesity. Cities play a critical role in fostering a shared & secure culture in public spaces. It is therefore critical for cities to consider the impact of urban development on citizens’ feelings of insecurity.

Since the 1980s, public spaces have experienced a renaissance. Public spaces have increasingly become a key component of many rejuvenation and development schemes (both residential and commercial) around the world.

A rapidly evolving world requires purpose-driven public space which ensures the safety, security, and well-being of a sustainable future. The principles of urban planning and design should be used to create a safe public space. The following principles should be kept in mind when implementing an urban development project: footfall, space diversity, penetrability, clarity and visibility, lighting, and distinct essence.

High-quality public spaces provide enormous economic, social, and environmental benefits to their communities and localities when they are done correctly.

What is CPTED? How Ukraine (Kharkiv) benefitted from it?

Let’s take a look.

People-Centric Public Spaces

People stand at core public spaces; it is the sole reason for the existence of such structures and facilities. However, it is rather ironic that people’s input are not taken into account while designing these facilities.

The most important aspect of planning for public spaces is gathering people’s requirements and understanding their expectations.

Architects, engineers, urban planners, and security advisers must collaborate throughout the planning and design process of public spaces in order to achieve maximum security integration. Potential threats & hazardous scenarios must be evaluated and simulated. The concepts of resilience and robustness must be adopted, particularly for building structures. Innovative architectural and artistic concepts can incorporate security measures. Correlated design can aid in the integration of security into the urban environment.

A vulnerability assessment of the site as well as an analysis of potential attack scenarios and their consequences if carried out requires the implementation of the security by design concept and the development of an appropriate protective strategy. The scenario-based approach helps to channel the complexity of the vulnerability assessment process. A site survey is essential for identifying existing vulnerabilities and attack paths.

The likelihood of a terrorist attack is difficult to calculate because it is also dependent on temporal circumstances (high-profile events, gatherings, aggressors’ personal, religious, political, and other motivations, attackers’ current state of mind, etc.) and, in many cases, is opportunistic. Indeed, decision-makers will have to accept a certain level of risk because it is both economically and practically impossible to protect against all possible threats. The acceptable risk definition is an important part of the security assessment procedures.

The European Commission is at the forefront of developing standards and promoting “Security by Design.” It creates The European Commission develops, manages, and communicates knowledge in a holistic, multidisciplinary way by providing guidance material, conducting conferences, and establishing networks for the exchange of best practices and lessons learned. It also grants funding opportunities for research and development projects in the field.

The European Commission has taken concrete steps to promote security by design for the protection of public spaces.

What is CPTED?

Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design, CPTED. This strategy aims to prevent criminal activity, such as terrorism, as well as anti-social behavior and feelings of insecurity. In order to implement effective solutions, CPTED implies two concepts, both physical and social, that must be thoroughly addressed. Stakeholders from all layers of society with diverse backgrounds and expertise must be included in the planning approach at all times. CPTED is a type of evidence-based action that focuses on a specific area or environment. To be effective, the approach must be both time and site-specific, focusing on a specific building, for example. When carefully and precisely targeted, the strategy has proven to be effective.

The origins of CPTED concepts can be traced back to criminology and crime opportunity theories and research. Since the 1970s, CPTED concepts have been used, and CPTED-style security measures can be traced back to the earliest human settlements. C. Ray Jeffery coined the term CPTED in 1971.

Since then, it has been incorporated into a variety of other crime-prevention strategies in use today. Defensible space, broken windows theory, routine activity theory, rational choice, situational crime prevention, and crime-free housing are just a few examples.

A series of formal and rigorous evaluations in the fields of environmental psychology, criminology, and crime science have given CPTED an increasingly solid theoretical foundation based on firm evidence of a significant crime and fear reduction.

Today, CPTED is an internationally recognized tool for promoting community growth and encouraging safe activities. CPTED will increase revenue, assist you in gaining ownership of your property, deter criminal activity, reduce fear of crime, and increase the perception of safety once it is implemented.

CPTED (pronounced as ‘sep-ted‘) is also known for Designing Out Crime and Creating Secure Spaces. 

CPTED in Kharkiv (Ukraine)

Officers from the National Police of Ukraine (NPU) in Kharkiv attended a webinar on “Crime prevention through environmental design” (CPTED) in early June 2020. Who knew this would come in handy a couple of years later?

This CPTED webinar was organized with the help of EUAM’s Field Office Kharkiv and delivered by William Brame, Director of Timothy Shilston Associates Ltd and a former EUAM Lead Advisor on Community Policing.

“CPTED is a crucial tool in the prevention of crime,” Brame explained to the Kharkiv district police officers and the representatives of amalgamated communities. “By using simple design principles and adopting a methodological approach, police working in partnership with municipal authorities and designers can keep people and their property safe.” He also shared the critical principles on which CPTED strategies are built, such as natural surveillance, natural access control, and territoriality.

The CPTED Webinar in Kharkiv ended with the hope that the police officers in Kharkiv can turn this theory into practice within their communities across the region of Ukraine.

No Surprise that Ukraine was so well prepared for the Russian invasion which is still happening. How military and civilians amalgamated as a Team in resisting the Russian invasion is not only an example of sheer resilience, and intricate planning but overwhelming too. The rest would be written in history.

ISO Recognizes CPTED with a first-ever ISO Standard – ISO 22341:2021

ISO 2234 – Security and Resilience – Protective Security – Guidelines for crime prevention through environmental design were released in January 2021.

The ISO 22341, Guidelines for crime prevention through environmental design, examines the fundamentals of CPTED, including its historical context, four key CPTED considerations, and CPTED strategies. Those strategies offer fundamental guidance for their implementation during the planning, design, and site and social management stages. The standard also examines a five-step process for implementing CPTED, which aids oversight and aligns with ISO risk management standards.

Advanced protective security professionals, architects, engineers, city planners, and public safety professionals have discovered that incorporating Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) principles into their professional practice improves the safety and security of the physical environments they support. The implementation of these decades-old concepts allows the built environment, building designs, and physical factors to positively influence human behavior and deter crime among those who enter the planned environment.

Dr. Hyeonho Park, ISO 22341 project leader and expert in Working Group 6, which was responsible for the standard’s drafting, says, “This standard has been in development for several years and is an important topic in security that needed to be addressed at the international level.”

CPTED applications are becoming more widely trained and implemented by professionals around the world, according to Mark Schreiber, CPP, lead representative of the ASIS International liaison organization to ISO/TC 292, not only because of their universal application and impact but also because of their economic and aesthetic benefits to the spaces we live and work in. He also claims that CPTED can be applied to not only the intentional planning and design of physical spaces but also to improved operations within the space with the potential for continuous improvement.

Advanced protective security professionals, architects, engineers, city planners, and public safety professionals have discovered that incorporating Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) principles into their professional practice improves the safety and security of the physical environments they support. The implementation of these decades-old concepts allows the built environment, building designs, and physical factors to positively influence human behavior and deter crime among those who enter the planned environment.

Cities are becoming denser, and our urban spaces now more than ever need to accommodate and encourage physical activity. By designing, creating, and operating safe and secure spaces that also facilitate social distancing, we can encourage physical activity in the urban public realm.

The advantages of safe urban environments are both physical and mental, and while improving our health and well-being, a decrease in the sedentary population can also provide economic benefits in the form of lower health risks and healthcare costs.

People-centered security design should be used early in the design process by those shaping our urban public realm. This will act as a catalyst for creating cities that are sustainable, healthy, and prosperous.

A well-targeted and focused application of CPTED principles which includes both physical and social elements can help protect public space from a variety of threats and risks, including petty crime, panic movements, and terrorist attacks. It is not always possible to plan and design a public space from the ground up in accordance with CPTED principles. However, multi-agency, collaborative sites, and social management can help to mitigate the security flaws that come with public spaces. Cities must carefully consider the real needs of users to avoid exclusionary practices. Throughout the design, planning, and management stages, systematic follow-up and democratic input ensure that all stakeholders are involved in making public spaces safe, accessible, and open to all.

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