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54 of Transportation, and private businesses. Smaller commu- CASE STUDY 5: VALLEY METRO RAIL, PHOENIX, nities in the immediate area have also approved funds for ARIZONA surveillance cameras (Brandolph April 9, 2010; Brandolph April 22, 2010). Description of the Transit System Despite the existence of a 10-page policy that addresses Valley Metro Rail, known as METRO, is a 20-mile at-grade privacy issues relating to the cameras, the mayor's plans light rail system connecting the cities of Phoenix, Tempe, have drawn criticism from the American Civil Liberties and Mesa. Costing $1.43 billion to build, it began revenue Union and others who oppose the cameras on the basis of service in December 2008, operating from 19th Avenue and costs and civil liberties issues, or on research questioning Bethany Home Road in Phoenix, continuing through down- their value in crime prevention (Wilkinson 2010). One critic town Phoenix and downtown Tempe to Main Street and noted that neither the Port of Pittsburgh Commission nor Sycamore in Mesa. Valley Metro has 28 stations; the major the local Coast Guard installation reported a single threat activity centers it serves are downtown Phoenix, the Sky against Pittsburgh's waterways or port facilities (Levine Harbor Airport, Papago Park Center, Arizona State Univer- 2008). Each municipality that has so far publicized a desire sity, downtown Tempe, and Mesa. Eight parking lots provide to rely on video surveillance to fight crime has been criti- a total of 3,600 spaces. Most of the embedded track is in cized by local civil liberties groups. Additionally, by focus- streets, separated from traffic lanes by a nominal 6-in curb. ing on surveillance technology as a crime-fighting tool, Direct fixation is used to attach rail on bridges, and tie and these municipal officials have led the media to inquire after ballast is used in the Operations and Maintenance Center almost all crimes about whether video exists from the crime yard, located in Phoenix. scene. Each of the cities also includes within its borders well- established transit agencies that make use of video surveil- Fifty electric-powered LRVs can be operated singly or as lance and that rely to differing degrees on DHS funding for two- or three-car trains by means of an overhead contact system expansions. wire (catenary) at 850-volts DC that receives power from the two electric companies at traction power substations, located Lessons Learned approximately every mile along the alignment. Operating headway is 10 minutes during weekdays, increasing to 15 These ongoing and fluid situations raise questions that are to between 20 and 30 minutes during off-peak and on week- important to transit agencies. Not yet lessons learned, they ends. The system operates approximately 20 hours per day. are more appropriately items for long-range consideration. The Operations Control Center, located in Phoenix, is adja- For instance, transit agencies, particularly those that com- cent to the Bus Control Center. pete for Tier II funds, may be competing for DHS funds not only with other transit agencies but also with the cities in A proof-of-payment system is used to collect fares. Paid which they are located. Although the DHS funds come from areas are indicated by signage and compliance is reinforced different grant programs, questions may arise as to whether by periodic inspection conducted by contract security per- funds to a municipality may influence awards to the city's sonnel. Paid areas, sometimes called fare paid zones, are transit system. This may lead to transit agencies giving the areas, generally station platforms, where patrons are greater consideration to partnering with their cities, as in expected to have valid tickets and may be asked by transit Houston, by seeking funding for surveillance improvements personnel to show a ticket, a receipt, or some other proof as upgrades as part of municipal planning but may present that they have paid for travel. Although the agency estimates problems for transit agencies that overlap a number of politi- its evasion rate at less than 1%, it believes it will improve its cal jurisdictions. capability to discourage nonpayment by upgrading its sys- tem of manually verifying the identity of riders with an elec- Apart from funding, it is difficult to predict the outcome of tronic system that will be tied to a database of past evaders. greater attention being paid to video surveillance as a crime prevention and apprehension tool. Although this increased Security Organization and Personnel focus on video surveillance may assist transit agencies in expanding their use of the technology and win them support Valley Metro relies on an unusual two-pronged arrange- from external stakeholders who are more concerned with ment to secure its transit system. All three cities support the crime than with terrorism, it may also cause the agencies transit system by having their officers respond to calls for to become embroiled in civil liberties debates surrounding service, but only the Phoenix Police Department (PPD) has the use of video surveillance. Expanded use of surveillance a transit bureau that routinely assigns sworn officers to tran- solely as a crime control tool also may undercut the ability sit facilities within its jurisdiction. Phoenix also provides of transit systems use of it to enhance their fraud control and department-employed police assistants, primarily as fare risk mitigation efforts. inspectors, whereas Tempe and Mesa have chosen to rely on
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55 the same contract security firm for those tasks. In addition to ble and visual alarms to further discourage misuse. Other fare inspection duties, the contract security firm, responsible emergency and communication systems include a public to the transit agency rather than the individual cities, also address system and variable message boards at stations and patrols stations, platforms, and park-and-ride lots. Patrols a SCADA system that monitors train operations and sup- include riding the trains, responding to calls by means of porting subsystems. dispatched patrol cars, and patrolling stations on personal transportation devices (Segway). Approximately two-thirds Surveillance is also in place at the Operations and Main- of the system is within the city of Phoenix and the PPD is tenance Center yard, where it is used to support perimeter responsible for security only within its citywide jurisdiction. fencing and access control at administrative areas. Security Similarly, the security contractor is responsible for secu- is tight at Valley Metro's administrative offices in downtown rity for only the remaining third of the system, specifically Phoenix. Electronic locks and key cards provide access con- within the cities of Tempe and Mesa. (This comprises only trol; employees need to display their ID cards at all times, about 1 mile and one station, which is at the east end of the and all visitors must be signed in and are issued visitor ID line in Mesa.) PPD also provides municipal security guards cards. All areas that are accessible to the public are under to staff the Operations and Maintenance Center. Informa- camera surveillance, primarily for use as post-event inves- tion not publicly available was provided for the case study by tigatory tools. Larry Engleman, until recently the director of the Office of Safety, Security and Quality Assurance, who has remained In addition, all LRVs are equipped with a larger number with Valley Metro as its safety and security consultant. of cameras than in many other transit systems. Of the 16 cameras, all continuously recording, 10 cover the exterior Original Video Surveillance System and 6 cover the interior of the rail cars. If a passenger uses an onboard emergency intercom to contact the operator, Valley Metro began planning its security system, includ- the nearest camera is activated on the operator's console so ing video surveillance, almost as soon as it began planning that the operator can assess conditions. The external cam- the overall transit system. Beginning with the formation of eras play a large role in accident investigation, particularly its Fire Life Safety and Security Committee in 2001, Val- LRV and passenger vehicle collisions. For example, video ley Metro encouraged area police and fire officials--espe- removed from an LRV in early 2009 had recorded crossing cially those from Phoenix, Tempe, and Mesa--to get and arm activity that assisted in determining the cause of a colli- stay involved. The committee was active, with more than sion between a truck and that LRV. The information was also 50 meetings during the years of planning, and benefited used to check conditions at four similarly designed grade from stability in its membership and the CPTED expertise crossings ("Status of Metro Investigation..." 2009). within the group. This advanced planning resulted in all facilities and vehicles being designed using CPTED prin- Protecting the Tempe Town Lake Bridge ciples. Stations were built to be open so as to minimize areas for criminals to hide, individual seating is provided to A major element of the surveillance system, and a particular discourage lounging and loitering, and seats on LRVs face focus of Valley Metro's safety and security program, is the the doors where possible so patrons are aware of the move- 1,500-ft bridge over the Tempe Town Lake. The protection ment of other patrons. Specifications to manufacturers call of the Tempe Town Lake Bridge relies on a unique combi- for vandal-resistant materials of smooth nonporous surfaces nation of intrusion detection and surveillance cameras in and cut-resistant fabrics. Plastic film covers all windows and a high-traffic area. The system provides for protecting the other glass surfaces for easy replacement if marred by graf- bridge itself and also covers the approach to the bridge and a fiti or scratchiti. lead track into the rail yard. Video surveillance cameras have been an integral part of The Town Lake and its adjacent Beach Park are local safety and security since the introduction of revenue service. focal points for major events. The beach, originally built in All eight parking lots (referred to locally as park-and-ride 1931, was renovated in 1999 as part of the construction of lots) are covered by surveillance cameras that are monitored the lake, which is built on inflatable rubber barriers in the locally and at the control center, which is itself monitored by riverbed to confine water within its 2-mile-long boundar- surveillance cameras. Cameras also cover station platforms ies. In addition to regular recreational facilities, the beach and focus on emergency call boxes, which can be helpful contains an amphitheater that accommodates about 5,000 if they are engaged and those trying to reach the control people. The beach and the lake are the sites of many annual center are for any reason incapacitated. This type of sur- events, including two triathlons, music festivals, the fantasy veillance of call boxes is also useful in preventing improper of lights July 4th fireworks show, a New Year's Eve block use; for instance, someone might use the phone to initiate a party, and other activities that draw large crowds to the area. false emergency call as a distraction for criminal behavior. There are also attractions at either end of the bridge; at one Emergency call boxes are also equipped with local audi- end is a busy and popular nightclub and at the other side is the
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56 Arizona State University campus. When the alignment for Current and Future Upgrades the transit project was approved, the need for a bridge over the lake became a major element of the project owing to the Because it was a new transit system at the time it developed area's popularity and because of the large amount of traffic its surveillance capabilities, Valley Metro was not eligible in the area. The need for modern and dependable protection for DHS funding. It is the only agency that participated in of the LRVs and of pedestrians was immediately apparent. the synthesis that reported that 100% of its funds for its Since its opening, the bridge has become integrated into the surveillance system were derived from agency funds. Val- activities associated with the lake. Its construction began in ley Metro is attempting to obtain outside funding through early 2005; a lighting ceremony celebrated the completion either DHS or the American Recovery and Reinvestment of its most important parts 1 year later, and since the official Act to incorporate analytics into its existing surveillance opening of the transit system, a LED light display under the network, but thus far has not been awarded funds under bridge casts varying colors onto the lake after dark. either program. The surveillance system was installed by NICE; cameras Lessons Learned are high-resolution color analog that is converted to digital. All cameras and security systems feed into Valley Metro's Engleman attributes much of the success surrounding the fiber-optic backbone, which eliminates outside connections light rail system's entire surveillance network, but particu- and makes it virtually impossible to hack the system. All larly the Town Lake Bridge system, to the cooperation and cameras record continuously; images from facility cameras continuity that began with the Fire Life Safety and Security at the control center are stored for 30 days and onboard LRV Committee and that has continued until the present time. images are stored for 3 days. Management has attempted to What might seem to be a complex policing arrangement- determine the overall costs of the system by separating the involving three local jurisdictions and a private security camera system from the rest of its communications equip- firm is successful because the police departments work ment, but has been advised by its communication engineer well together and because they became involved with tran- that it is impossible to section out costs in this way. sit agency system design years before the start of revenue operations. Each city had time to consider its transit secu- The first line of security for the bridge is the responsibil- rity arrangements and to decide, in consultation with Val- ity of the Passenger Assistance Agents at the control center, ley Metro, how to provide patrol coverage as well as how to who monitor the surveillance cameras and intrusion alarms. respond to emergencies on the rail system. They dispatch security officers for all intrusions, and the Tempe Police Department typically responds. The nature of Valley Metro reinforces its own role in protecting its police statistics, which are based on events that occur rather property by investing in electronically protecting the Town than those that are prevented, makes it impossible for Valley Lake Bridge, as well as all other facilities, and also by shar- Metro to know the number of people who have been deterred ing its surveillance images with local police to help them from trespassing because of the publicity about the intru- solve incidents and investigate accidents. Valley Metro also sion detection warning system or the surveillance cameras. helps keep the local police from becoming overburdened Since the opening of the transit system, though, the Tempe with transit-related calls by having its emergency call boxes police have received notifications that resulted in 21 arrests linked to its Operations Control Center rather than directly and three warnings. Because DHS has identified the bridge to the police so that it can filter out calls that are not actual as critical infrastructure, trespassing is considered a felony, emergencies, such as patrons using the phone to find out the most serious category of crime. This is highly unusual; when the next train is due to arrive. Although a state-of-the- trespassing is generally not treated as felonious. In addi- art surveillance system benefits the transit system and local tion, 25 reports of activity were deemed unfounded because police, planning and continued cooperation are important although police were dispatched, no trespassers or other elements of ensuring that maximum value is obtained from unusual activities were observed in the area. the surveillance network.