City of Durham Reduces Property Loss and Break-ins with Enhanced Video Monitoring

The City of Durham, North Carolina is a great place for people to live, work, and visit. Located halfway between the Great Smoky Mountains and the beaches of the Atlantic, Durham is centered in the four-county Durham-Chapel Hill Metropolitan Area. The more than 250,000 Durhamites enjoy a rich diversity of amenities right outside their doors, including the Durham Performing Arts Center, Museum of Life + Science, more than 300 restaurants of all kinds, and the famous Durham Bulls baseball team and park, just to name a few.

Durham’s business community is also diverse and strong. With an economy driven by the life sciences thanks to Research Triangle Park, Duke University, North Carolina Central University, and many Fortune 100 companies, Durham is recognized as America’s eighth leading high-tech metro area and one of the best cities in which to begin a career. With living and working environments as rich as these, it is no wonder that more than 9 million people visit Durham each year.

With such amazing people and businesses to serve, the City government works hard to provide the excellent public services its citizens and visitors deserve.  The City is responsible for a wide range of services—police, fire, public communications, public works, solid waste, 100 parks and recreation centers, and many others. An overarching concern for all of these service areas is the need for the security and preservation of public property.

In 2017, the City administrators prepared a list of priority properties that were in need of improved security. Some of the locations had experienced break-ins or thefts in the past, and others were considered potential risk areas based on the equipment and supplies located in them. The City knew they needed to have a cohesive security system throughout their public properties, and also that they needed assistance from a professional security firm with the right expertise and capabilities.

Solution

The City solicited bids from qualified security firms, and Brady’s obvious expertise won them the project. Video surveillance is proven to be an effective first deterrent to potential thieves and burglars. Therefore, the first phase of the City’s comprehensive plan was to expand and/or upgrade the video monitoring systems at 17 high priority locations.

The properties were diverse and included recreation centers, office buildings, radio tower stations, public works, general services, and solid waste management facilities, and others. Brady worked with the City’s General Services Department to design the new or upgraded security system for each property to ensure it was custom-designed to meet the unique layout of each facility. During the design phase, Brady also strove to utilize suppliers and subcontractors that were minority-owned or woman-owned businesses to help the City meet their goals for supporting such business enterprises.

Mr. Logan Small, Physical Security Manager for the City, reports his first impression was that “Brady is very responsive and accommodating.” Brady’s responsiveness was evidenced by the consistently open dialogue between the Brady project manager and Mr. Logan, and their accommodating approach was demonstrated in their flexibility with schedule changes sometimes needed by the City. “The Brady project manager was great to work with,” Mr. Logan reports, “as was their head technician.”

As the system installations proceeded, Brady’s on-site team impressed Mr. Logan. “They always worked safely and adjusted their approach when necessary to avoid disrupting building operations,” he says, “which was especially important in those facilities where heavy equipment was being used.” He also found the Brady technicians to be very knowledgeable and helpful, “offering suggestions and making good recommendations as they proceeded within a building.”

Results

The project was completed in early 2018, despite a few unavoidable scheduling changes needed by the City. Mr. Logan reports “it went really well and was one of the best experiences I’ve had with a contractor.”

The City has already noticed a reduction in property loss and attempted break-ins at the 17 high-risk properties. The City is so pleased with Brady’s work, they have awarded a second video surveillance project to Brady and is also seeking their input on a new access control technology the City is considering.

In addition, Brady teamed with MBE and WBE subcontractors above and beyond the City’s goals for MBE/WBE utilization, which is another success for all involved—Brady, the City, and the subcontractors!

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