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Expanding Surveillance Camera Program Eyed

A successful partnership forged by Ald. Donovan and local businesses to bring video surveillance monitoring of street-level activity along a key stretch of W. National Ave. has brought about the prospect of installing similar cameras to help bolster safety in other south side business districts, the alderman said.

In fact an effort to expand the surveillance camera initiative is underway, with Ald. Donovan hosting a series of meetings with other south side business owners to gauge support. "The National Avenue cameras are helping to reduce crime and identify suspects from Chavez Drive (S. 16th St.) to Layton Blvd. (S. 27th St.)," Ald. Donovan said. "Residents and business owners have said they're glad to see the cameras because they know it keeps the criminal element at bay and it makes them feel more secure."

Business areas along W. Lincoln Ave., W. Greenfield Ave., additional stretches of W. National Ave. and other south side areas are being eyed as possible new locations for video surveillance, the alderman said.

Ald. Donovan said the mounted cameras along National Ave.—the first of their kind monitoring such a large area in the city—have provided a strong deterrent against all types of crime, including theft, robbery, assault, drug activity, loitering, prostitution and vandalism.

Badger Mutual Insurance paid for the cameras and their installation, and Roundy's foods paid for the signage associated with the cameras. Also, Roundy's security personnel are helping monitor the video footage captured by the cameras.