Jersey City has upped their tally of CCTV cameras to 208 after adding 42 more in 11 different locations identified as high crime areas.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“We’re strategically placing the cameras in high crime areas with updated, state of the art systems, not only to serve as a crime deterrent, but also as a crucial piece of evidence in court,” Mayor Steven Fulop said in a statement.
“We continue to see downtown trends in crime throughout the City and the cameras are a crucial tool in strengthening our crime reduction efforts.”
In 2018, Phase II of the CCTV project was completed, bringing the total of CCTV cameras installed and implemented to a total of 166 cameras citywide.
The new 208 cameras are operating with five times more clarity than the city’s old 1-megapixel technology.
When Fulop took office in 2013, there were 50 functioning cameras throughout Jersey City, a city spokeswoman said.
Phase I, Phase II and Phase III cost nearly $1.4 million, in a combination of Department of Homeland Security Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) funds and capital budget funds.
The cameras serve not only to assist the police, but can also be used for evacuation and emergency scenarios.
Additionally, phase III includes the continuation of extending fiber lines from existing lines to new and future locations, and continuing to upgrade the technology’s software.
“Now that our software is updated, we are able to have more users on the system simultaneously, without a lag or delay in the video – that includes our officers, the Office of Emergency Management and even the Department of Public Works – which is necessary in an emergency scenario,” added Public Safety Director James Shea.
“We’re working with our officers to get the software on their cell phones so they can access the cameras at any time.”
Phase I and II of the CCTV project included 6 parks and 21 street locations. The prior system, which was comprised of 150 cameras, was installed in phases between eight and fifteen years ago using Urban Enterprise Zone funds, which meant they were only placed in business districts throughout the city.
The locations for the new cameras are based on crime data identifying areas of historically higher crime, municipal parks and community feedback.
Additionally, the old cameras hadn’t been serviced in several years once the state withdrew Urban Enterprise Zone (UEZ) revenue from municipalities, which led to up to a third or more of the cameras out of service at one time.
Phase III includes 11 new locations totaling 42 cameras:
1. MLK Boulevard and Armstrong Avenue (4 HD Fixed Cameras)
2. MLK Boulevard and Dwight Street (4 HD Fixed Cameras)
3. MLK Boulevard and Bidwell Avenue (4 HD Fixed Cameras)
4. MLK Boulevard and Wilkinson Park (4 HD Fixed Cameras)
5. Wilkinson Park (4 HD Fixed Cameras)
6. Ocean and Wilkinson Avenues (5 HD Fixed Cameras)
7. MLK Boulevard and Bostwick Avenue (5 HD Fixed Cameras)
8. MLK Boulevard and Grant Avenue (4 HD Fixed Cameras)
9. MLK Boulevard and Orient Avenue (4 HD Fixed Cameras)
10. MLK Boulevard and Oak Street (4 HD Fixed Cameras)
11. Union Street and Ocean Avenue (4 HD Fixed Cameras)