25 February 2014 | APCOA PARKING (UK)’s anti-crime taskforce has helped to reduce criminal activity to a 10-year low in the City of London.
Since taking over the car parking management of six City of London car parks in 2003, crime has reduced by an unprecedented 92 per cent; and *26.67 per cent between 2012 and 2013, making it one of the safest areas to park across the Capital.
In 2003, over 250 crimes were recorded in the City of London contract. It comprised a myriad of motor-related crimes and personal theft; from Minories in the east of the square mile to Blackfriars in the west; and from Tower Hill in the south to the Barbican and Smithfield in the north.
APCOA’s managed site at Minories Car Park in Tower Hill experienced the sharpest fall in crime across the estate; recording a 94.20 per cent drop in since the start of the contract. In 2003, 69 crimes were recorded; by November 2013, this figure had fallen to just four for the 12-month period.
The downward trend has been prevalent across all six parking locations. Between 2012 and 2013, just 22 vehicle-related crimes were recorded, which equates to a 300 per cent decrease since 2010.
To help combat crime, APCOA and the City of London have worked closely with the policing authorities to redress the balance of gang culture and opportunist crime in the financial mile. It has principally been driven through an advanced training programme, awareness campaigns, and looking at key behavioural trends and people motives.
APCOA has adopted a proactive rather than a reactive approach to tacking crime. Car park staff are trained in effective patrolling, and any suspicious activity is immediately reported to the Police. All crimes are investigated by the Contract Manager and any evidence is quickly given to the City of London Police, in some cases within minutes of the activity happening.
The Contract Manager attends regular meetings with the City of London Police to deal with Anti-Social Behaviour and also attends meetings on crime reduction with the Safer City Partnership. Over the years, he has built up a good rapport with many of the City and Metropolitan Police officers and set-up a partnership between the City of London Police, the City of London Authority and the Metropolitan Police when crime was at its peak. The result of this can be seen in the reduction in crime at all car parks.
Philip Everett, Director of the Built Environment at the City of London Corporation, said: “Vehicle crime, including those relating to motorcycles and bicycles, is distressing and inconvenient to our car park users. The City Corporation is pleased to support APCOA in their efforts to keep car parking crime in the City’s car parks to a minimum. Working jointly with the City Corporation and City of London Police, APCOA has succeeded in achieving an impressively low crime rate.”
APCOA first began working with the City of London in 2003 after securing an initial five-year term. The contract was renewed in 2008 for a further five years following a very successful first term. In December 2013, APCOA were awarded a further extension until December 2014.
City of London:
- Baynard House Car Park (Blackfriars)
- London Wall (Moorgate)
- Minories Car Park (Minories)
- Smithfield Car Park (West Smithfield)
- Tower Hill Coach and Car Park (Tower Hill)
- Whites Row (Tower Hamlets covered by the Metropolitan Police).
For more information about APCOA Parking (UK), please email UKpress[at]apcoa.com
*Crime figures for the period 1 December 2012 to 29 November 2013