City starts installation process for cameras on American Tobacco Trail

Jul. 02, 2014 @ 05:25 PM

The city of Durham is starting the process of installing five new cameras on the American Tobacco Trail.

Wednesday and Thursday, crews are working on installing poles and hardware attachment.
The trail between Morehead and Enterprise streets will be closed Thursday from 8 a.m. to noon, but a detour will be set up using Enterprise, South and Blackwell streets. 
The new installations come less than a month after a string of crimes rocked the trail.
Since the robberies in early June, 17-year-old Justin Sturn of Durham was arrested on counts of simple assault, common law robbery and felony conspiracy with the string of crimes committed.
The Durham Police Department also beefed up patrols along the trail.
The camera installations also uphold a commitment the American Tobacco Campus made to help the safety of trail goers.
“American Tobacco Campus remains committed to the idea that Durham is the best place to be in the entire United States and that this exceptional community will come together to resolve any issues it faces,” Rick Polley, general manager for the American Tobacco Campus, said in a previous statement to The Herald-Sun.
Amy Blalock, senior public affairs specialist with the city, said the five new cameras should be up and running by August.
The new cameras will be placed on the two new poles, with each pole getting two. Then another camera will be put on the existing camera pole that was installed in January 2013.
Once the poles are installed, Duke Energy will supply the power and Blackwell Management will install the cameras.
The city is not footing the bills for the cameras. Blackwell Street Management Company is. John Morris, with Blackwell said it would not release the amount the cameras cost.
“The cost of the cameras doesn’t matter to us, the safety of the trail does,” he said.
Morris also said there have been talks about possibly adding other cameras to the trail, but the decision to add more would come at a future time, once the five new ones are up and running.
The cost for installing the poles, however, has been taken care of by the city. Each pole costs about $3,200. The city will also provide the funds for electricity to the poles, with each pole costing about $30 a month — bringing the total monthly cost for the poles to $90.
Since the initial installation of a security camera in January 2013, city officials said there has been no reported vandalism to them.
In 2013, there were seven crimes reported on the American Tobacco Trail. Five of them were cleared by arrest. Since the beginning of 2014 there had been five crimes reported on the trail. 

Follow on Twitter at @LaurenHorsch.