WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - West Lafayette Police Chief Jason Dombkowski said timing is everything. As the State Street Master Plan moves along, Dombkowski said the timing is right to install video cameras on the street.
"The timing was right to go ahead and get this done for multiple reasons," Dombkowski said. "It's not only the public safety aspect, but also the development part, and for engineering to study the corridor."
As News 18 previously reported, The State Street Master Plan aims to redesign State Street from Tapawingo Drive to the new U.S. 231 Corridor, mainly by making it pedestrian friendly.
On Wednesday, the West Lafayette Redevelopment Commission approved the police department's purchase of four video cameras. They will be installed on State Street between Chauncey Avenue and Grant Street.
Development Director Chandler Poole said they can be used to see traffic and pedestrian patterns to help determine what the new State Street design will be.
"It will provide information and we'll see that this is where people are crossing, [and ask] 'what do we do with this?' If they're really not moving where we would like them to be at an established street crossing, how do we move those, how do we make sure it works how we want it to work," Poole said.
Police will be looking at more than the traffic and pedestrian patterns.
"There are a lot of people in that corridor," Dombkowski said. "There is an opportunity for us to look at public safety, and to monitor things for crime as well."
The cameras could be installed in as soon as two weeks. They will be paid with left over money from the second phase of the Northwestern Avenue Gateway project.
Dombkowski said the cameras are milestones for the city.
"We don't have any cameras that are owned by the city that we have in public space that we monitor," Dombkowski said. "Purdue University just to the west of the corridor has hundreds of cameras in use. And the City of Lafayette has several cameras in their downtown area."
Poole said for the next several months the city will be taking public input about the project before a design will be made.
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