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Secured by Design

Program Goal

Secured by Design focuses on crime prevention at the design, layout and construction stages of homes, commercial premises and other built features and promotes the use of security standards for a wide range of applications and products.  Secured by Design works with developers, builders, architects, and planners to create the safest developments and communities possible, with a goal of creating socially sustainable communities.  Socially sustainable communities are communities that succeed now, economically, socially and environmentally, and respect the needs of future generations.  They are well-designed places where people feel safe and secure; where crime and disorder, or the fear of crime, doesn’t undermine quality of life or community cohesion. 

Secured by Design-U.S. is the North American affiliate of Secured by Design, the official United Kingdom Police flagship initiative supporting the principles of “designing out crime”.  Secured by Design has been in existence in the UK for over 20 years and has been shown to have a dramatic impact on reducing crime through good design principles.

Secured by Design and Crime

Secured by Design does not guarantee that a particular area will be crime proof, but indicates that the site has been subject to a design process and improved level of security which, in the experience of the police and other agencies, have been shown to significantly reduce the risks of crime and fear of crime.

Rationale of using good planning to prevent Crime

Safe design and planning makes sense financially, as once a development has been completed the main opportunity to incorporate crime prevention measures has been lost.  The costs involved in correcting or managing badly designed development are much greater than getting it right in the first place.  This does not mean that planning and safe design alone can prevent crime.  However, informed positive planning, particularly when coordinated with other measures, can make a significant contribution to tackling crime.  We need to create environments that people want to occupy and use, creating a strong and positive sense of communal identity.

Secured by Design Certification

The main tool for ensuring safe developments that Secured by Design (SbD) uses is the certification of new and existing developments.  The certification process covers several different types of developments (residential, commercial, mixed-use, parks, etc..) and is an indicator of a commitment by the developer to a safe and socially sustainable project.  The SbD rating systems consists of several minimum design prerequisites and many additional “credits”.  In order to be certified, a development must meet each prerequisite.  While each credit is optional, the achievement of each credit contributes to the project’s point total.  A minimum point total is required for certification, and higher point scores are required for platinum SbD certification.  In addition, a separate “renovation” certification process is also available for existing developments and built structures.  Once a project is certified, the certification is good for 5 years, at which time the property must be recertified.  The recertification process helps to ensure the maintenance and continued safety and social sustainability of a location.  Importantly, while Secured by Design certification is not a guarantee against crime and disorder, it indicates that an area has been subject to a design process and improved level of security that, in the experience of the police and other agencies, have been shown to significantly reduce the risks of crime and fear of crime.

Secured by Design Certification Levels

  • Basic
  • Platinum

Secured by Design Certification Categories

For more information on Safe by Design please contact Secured by Design - US

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