West U gated community: $400 per house
West U’s camera crime fighting options…
One: A Beta Test
Perimeter coverage: unknown
Already approved, the city council already appropriated $200,000 for two intersection surveillance camera systems. That budget estimate is high, though — the real cost should be no more than $148,000. This amount includes the engineering and hardware to fully carry out the system.
Each intersection system would actually consist of four camera units — each camera unit is actually two cameras joined in a single housing unit. One camera uses infrared technology to allow a usable picture at any time of the day. The other is a color camera captures the license plate, the make and model of the vehicle, and oftentimes a picture of the people in the vehicle.
Each intersection system will have four camera units, providing a multi-directional recording of all vehicles passing through. However, if intersection systems are placed on the perimeter of the city, the camera units will be located in the city of Houston.
Two: Strategic perimeter coverage
Perimeter coverage: 75-85 percent
With 6-8 intersection surveillance camera systems at major intersections on the perimeter of West University Place, almost everyone entering or leaving West U would be captured on video. A drawback is that each day thousands of vehicles which never enter West U would also be photographed.
The conservative cost of Option Two would be $444,000-592,000.
Three: Virtual Gated Community
Perimeter Coverage: 100 percent
There are 64 possible vehicular access points to West University Place. Option Three would locate an access point surveillance camera system at every possible entry point to West U.
The conservative estimate for a Virtual Gated Community would be $2.4 million, or about $400 per West U house. The actual price would likely be lower because of the economies of scale associated with a larger purchase.