The application period for this challenge is now closed

  • Governer Partner :City of Edmonton
  • Department :Community and Recreation Facilities and Transit Services
  • Category :Data Analytics, IoT, Process Improvement, Public Safety, Resident Engagement

Project Summary

Vandalism detection and prevention system for city maintained structures in public spaces.

Challenge Details

Citizen Services operates and maintains structures, such as a funicular, in many of our parks and public spaces. City Operations maintains Transit Shelters throughout the City. Unfortunately, these two types of structures have been targets of vandalism most recently.

The Edmonton river valley funicular was opened in December 2017 as a new mechanized way to access the River Valley. It is a way to show off the City’s beauty to tourists and residents alike. It is also an important link to provide those with mobility challenges a way to enjoy the scenic views and multi-use trails of the City’s river valley. The river valley is one of the City’s most valuable recreational amenities.

Transit shelters along City bus routes are a convenient place for transit users to await their bus. Transit shelters provide an area that is protected from the weather elements for ETS customers to wait for there bus.

In the case of the funicular, existing measures used to reduce vandalism are passive and reactive. Lighting as a deterrent is considered in designs and locations of structures. Where possible, security cameras are mounted, but continuous human monitoring of the video footage for all security camera locations is not feasible, and security cameras are not mounted in all locations. In the case of transit shelters, existing measures to mitigate vandalism includes using of material that are more resistant to vandalism such as breakage, graffiti, etching, and burning. Some of these measures include:
• Using thick tempered glass that is more difficult to break
• Using tempered glass instead of plexiglass because it is more resistant to graffiti, burning, and etching.
• Using aluminum shelter components so they are resistant to rusting when scratched.

Vandalism to these two public structures resulted in:
• Loss of availability – the Funicular had to be closed for repairs due to recent vandalism; when transit shelters are broken they become ineffective (broken glass) or dangerous due to shattered glass particles
• $47,000 of damage was done to the Funicular in one incident
• $272,500 of vandalism to Transit shelters in 2017
• perception of safety and image of the City – vandalism to public spaces is frustrating for all stakeholders and can influence the perception of safety and the reputation of the CIty as a friendly and welcoming place

By implementing a solution to this problem, multiple City Departments could:
• Reduce closures of public amenities and consistent availability for residents and visitors reducing frustration, improving safety and comfort, and accessibility for those with mobility challenges
• Reduce maintenance expenses or loss/claim expenses for insurance due to damage caused.