There will be more eyes – or cameras rather – focusing on crime prevention and improving safety for Parkes’ CBD thanks to a $226,306 grant.
The funds – from Round 2 of the Australian Government’s Safer Communities Fund and announced by Member for Riverina and Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack this week – will allow Parkes Shire Council to upgrade its security network.
The grant will enable council, in collaboration with local police, to install 17 new closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras, signage and upgrade 16 old analogue cameras.
It will also allow council to erect nine solar security lights and purchase a portable CCTV system with seven cameras and removable bollards to integrate with its existing security system.
Parkes Shire Mayor Councillor Ken Keith OAM welcomed the news.
“This grant will enable us to invest in a new security network and adequate lighting throughout the central business district, which will help to improve safety for our community,” he said.
“Thank you to Parkes Police, who worked closely with us to identify the hot spots for anti-social behaviour and crime throughout town.”
The project will involve upgrading the analogue cameras at the Parkes taxi rank, a new portable CCTV system (seven cameras) and new transportable concrete bollards.
There will also be new CCTV coverage precincts in Welcome Street, Grenfell Street, Lower Bogan Street and the Parkes Railway footbridge.
And new solar security lighting in Jansen Lane (behind the Cambridge Hotel), Parkes Railway Station footbridge precinct to support CCTV, and Grenfell Street.
Work will begin in the coming months, with the project expected to be complete by June 2019.
Chief Inspector Dave Cooper thanked council for recognising the value in these upgrades.
“Statistics indicate that these precincts are busy areas for anti-social activity, particularly on Friday and Saturday nights,” he said.
“This project will help mitigate some of these problems and greatly improve community safety and wellbeing.
“We appreciate the support of council in getting behind our crime prevention strategies.”
President of the Parkes Chamber of Commerce and a business owner himself in the CBD, Geoff Rice, was another to welcome the grant.
“Getting that amount of money will make it a terrific system,” he said.