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BID backing boosts city centre CCTV coverage in fight against crime

CALLS by business groups for improved CCTV in the city centre have been answered with the installation of a new, fully connected system of cameras throughout Central Milton Keynes.

The CCTV monitors key areas of the city, identified by MyMiltonKeynes Business Improvement District’s ambassadors as crime and anti-social behaviour hotspots.

Nine of the 11 cameras, funded by Milton Keynes City Council’s Safer Streets Project, have been installed after a comprehensive audit and consultation with a Thames Valley Police crime ‘heat map’ of  particular trouble spots. A further two, which have been funded by MyMiltonKeynes BID, are to be placed within the BID area to provide maximum coverage and to deter criminal activity.

The BID is working with the council to deliver the Safer Streets Project, which is creating a new ‘Safe Route’ across the city with upgrades to pedestrian areas and lighting in and around underpasses. The CCTV cameras are the BID’s contribution to the project and is part of its My Safe City initiative to increase safety and reduce crime within Central Milton Keynes.

BID chief executive Melanie Beck pictured said: “One of the key concerns of our My Safe City initiative was the need for a fully functioning and connected CCTV system across the BID area. Our ambassadors have significantly contributed to the delivery of this system, ensuring each camera is placed in an area that will have maximum impact.”

The cameras are positioned to cover areas including Xscape, 12th Street, Exchange Square, Station Square and sections of Midsummer Boulevard. They also monitor overground bridges on the outskirts of the BID area, bordered by H5 Portway, H6 Childs Way, Campbell Park and Station Square outside Milton Keynes Central train station.

The BID has been campaigning for improved CCTV coverage for some time. Plans are already in place for two more cameras to cover the north of the city, said Ms Beck.

“This new network will play a vital role in helping us to continue to deliver a safer, cleaner, better connected, smarter and more vibrant city centre for all,” she added.

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