September 13, 2018 10:06 am
Updated: September 17, 2018 8:34 am

Peterborough to upgrade security at Simcoe Street parking garage

Peterborough city staff is recommending that vacant space in the downtown bus terminal be used as a mini police station

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The city of Peterborough is looking to invest $70,000 in security upgrades to the Simcoe Street parking garage.

A staff report to be discussed Monday at city council’s general meeting recommends upgrades and renovations and that an additional $62,000 be included in the 2019 operation budget to expand the scope of the current contract for Securitas to provide an additional full-time security guard to patrol the parking garage. Currently, there are two full-time guards.

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“The cost of a full-time guard is estimated at $62,000 annually, and would be split equally between the 2019 operating budgets for parking and transit,” Wayne Jackson, commissioner of infrastructure and planning services, said.

The recommendations include installation of CCTV security cameras ($42,000), panic alarms ($12,000) and improved signage ($16,000). The 2018 capital budget also has $250,000 for LED retrofit projects of which $150,000 remains uncommitted so the report recommends lighting upgrades be done in stages.

The staff report notes there have been several incidents including a sexual assault, assault and vehicle break-ins at the parking garage over the last year that prompted a review of on-site security measures within the transit terminal platform areas and the parking garage.

A working group consisting of staff from transit and parking operations, facilities and energy management, police and Securitas was formed to discuss safety standards and protocols and made recommendations.

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The report says Securitas conducted a security risk assessment of the facility in March which highlighted poor lighting and lack of security camera coverage, especially in the stairwells of the garage which “makes this area a target for thefts and other illegal activity.”

There are also plans to renovate unused vacant office spaces ($50,000) to allow dedicated space for the Peterborough Police Service to “allow for a greater police presence at the Transit Terminal.”

“The recommended improvement program including new security cameras, panic alarms, and upgraded lighting combined with enhanced police presence and additional security patrol services will provide an improved level of security for customers, transit passengers, and employees working on site,” Jackson concludes in his report.

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