Public Space CCTV – Blazing a Vision in The City of York

cityofyorkThe City of York has become the first council in the UK to integrate its public space and transport CCTV through the large-scale deployment of ONVIF technology and all the benefits this brings.

As part of two major developments Meyertech Fusion-Core-Solar video management software and Fusion-Incident CCTV information management software has been employed to integrate the many legacy systems and IP cameras into the York Travel and Control Centre (YTCC), a dedicated Public Space and Transport CCTV facility located in a new £300,000 control room in West Offices. This is probably the largest ONVIF based public space system in the UK and will amount to the biggest change in the way CCTV is operated in York since the service was first introduced.

By embracing the ONVIF standard this historical city, which was once briefly the capital of England, is now ‘blazing a vision’ for the future of Public Space CCTV in the UK.

In parallel with the new unified control room the City of York Council York has begun to exploit its new private fibre optic network by installing the latest IP cameras more cost effectively and efficiently than ever before and, at the same time taking advantage of the flexibility that the CYC network provides to route the video streams.

With over 400 member manufacturers worldwide producing over 2000 conformant products, ONVIF provides increased flexibility and greater freedom of choice through interoperable products as the leading global standardisation initiative for IP-based physical security products. When choosing Video Management Software (VMS) to integrate and control their new system the City of York Council wanted to be safe in the knowledge that their investment is protected in the future, which, is why CYC chose Meyertech, the first British company to gain ONVIF Profile-S conformance.

MeyertechSpeaking about the project, David Wood, Sales Executive at Meyertech declared: “We are extremely excited by York’s vision to employ an ONVIF solution and especially pleased they have chosen to implement it using Fusion Video Management Software (VMS) and ZoneVu appliances.

With the continued growth of IP video surveillance in the last few years most councils have a strategy to migrate their Public Space systems from analogue to IP-digital connectivity. The interoperability that Fusion VMS provides was crucial in leveraging York’s existing analogue CCTV investments.

As more security equipment becomes IP convergent opportunities arise for systems to interoperate making long-term investment in security an actuality and allowing the City of York’s future aspirations to integrate Park & Ride sites, schools and many other council buildings and services a reality”.

CYC CCTVliveThe new control room which employs eight staff providing 24/7 coverage is now one of the most technologically advanced control centres in the country monitoring over 150 cameras across the city, and this is set to increase in the near future with cabinet member for planning and transport, councillor Dave Merrett stating: “We now have the potential to expand the range of other CCTV services we provide.”

The system has made an immediate impact with crime rates. In a single month last year alone it was used in 42 prosecutions. A point not lost on Councillor Linsay Cunningham-Cross, who stated: “If there is footage of crime, more often than not those being prosecuted will plead guilty, so it saves money all the way along the line. York is a safe city and we are keen to keep it that way. CCTV provides an essential service and a great way to do that.”

In a project which is at the forefront of digital technology nationally York’s CCTV system is also used to monitor traffic flow throughout the city’s roads network with the primary objectives of relieving congestion and improving public transport efficiency. Again Meyertech software has been a key element. Meyertech’s TrafficVu software takes ‘snap-shots’ of current road conditions throughout the city and uploads them to the City of York’s TravelYork website @ from where the public can check up to date road conditions to avoid congested areas.

Councillor Dave Merrett, said: “The new CCTV control centre will be so important to keeping York moving, we are a growing city and there are obviously issues with traffic flows. This will help with large scale events such as race days at York Racecourse, Royal visits and next year’s hosting of the Tour de France. But it will also help monitor the city’s roads on a daily basis to tackle congestion, especially during busy periods in the rush-hour. Other major cities like London have similar systems, but this really does put us at the forefront of the technology in the country.”

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