Three years and $14M later, the city ends its video-support contract with Unisys. Now what?
The police can also view cameras operated by SEPTA, the Streets Department and PennDOT, which provides roughly 1,000 additional eyes on the street, Woltemate says.
The city still wants to install more cameras to increase the number to 250, with the hope of someday reaching 500. James says a bid could go out by the end of the month for companies to hang additional cameras. But first, the current system needs to be fully armed and operational, a status that has has proved elusive for years now.
“It’s beyond me,” Woltemate says on getting more cameras online. “We’ll have to wait on the city.”
The next step in the journey to the future is slightly unsettling. Because it basically involves fighting crime with cameras. A boat load of them. But don’t be too concerned if you’re not cool with the idea of being watched (or if you don’t think cameras can deter crime). The city doesn’t have the best track record when it comes to these things (read: technological advancements of any kind). Still, in spite of evidence pointing to the tenuous relationship between cameras and decreased crime, the city’s going through with it.
Letters to the Editor