Center for Problem-Oriented Policing

Using CPTED for Problem Solving at a Building or Facility

This appendix outlines a process for completing an environmental evaluation when the problem is limited to a single building or facility. The process is divided into three phases related to a site visit and period of observation.

Activities before the site visit are focused on understanding the problem and the situation. This includes an examination of crime data, plans and policies, and organizational structures, all of which lead to the identification of key stakeholders who need to provide information and advice.

The site visit includes an orientation period, with a “tabletop” review, using a floor plan and site plan to review the structure of the facility and to identify the problem location(s) as well as safe and unsafe places. Facility tours are conducted with stakeholders and then the CPTED evaluator observes behavior and use independently for several days, at various times of the day and several days during a week to address changing activity schedules.

The process concludes with the development of recommendations and a report documenting the site visit and the findings.

Although the process as it is outlined here implies the work can be completed by a single person, most buildings and facilities are large enough to warrant a team approach.

Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design Facility SARA Process
BEFORE THE SITE VISIT REQUEST AND REVIEW INFORMATION
  • administrative organization (to identify appropriate contacts)
  • relevant statutes, ordinances, codes, policies and procedures
  • site and facility background (maps, plans, manuals, design/development review and approval processes, maintenance procedures, etc.)
  • police/security CFS and crime data
DEVELOP AN EVALUATION STRATEGY AND SCHEDULE APPOINTMENTS
DURING THE SITE VISIT OWNER/MANAGER ORIENTATION TO CPTED AND THE EVALUATION PROCESS EVALUATOR ORIENTATION
  • overview of the organization
  • “tabletop” review of location, site and facility (assignment of spaces, activities and schedules, etc.), noting problem areas
CONSTITUENT/STAKEHOLDER MEETINGS AND FACILITY TOURS INDEPENDENT FACILITY EXAMINATION (without stakeholders)
  • morning, afternoon, evening, and night
  • multiple weekday and weekend visits
[BREAK - to organize materials, analyze data, identify information needs, document the process, and reflect on observations, if needed] [RETURN VISIT - to fill gaps in data and information, to reconsider the findings from an earlier visit, to evaluate the facility during an alternate schedule, etc., if needed] CLIENT DEBRIEF
FOLLOWING THE SITE VISIT REVIEW DATA AND OTHER MATERIALS (photographs, floor plans, notes) DEVELOP RECOMMENDATIONS
  • changes to physical design and layout
  • modifications to laws, rules, regulations, policies and procedures
  • target hardening/security enhancements
  • community and social programs and activities
  • crime prevention education and awareness
DRAFT THE REPORT
  • introduction to the problem and report overview
  • description of methods (data collection and analysis, survey and interview protocols, site and facility evaluation activities, dates and times)
  • discussion of issues and findings
  • recommendations for future action (including additional or follow-up evaluation)
  • supporting documentation in appendixes
  • disclaimer**
SUBMIT DRAFT REPORT FOR REVIEW AND COMMENT (specifically, for factual accuracy) REDRAFT, RE-REVIEW AND REWRITE PRESENT AND DELIVER FINAL REPORT

** EXAMPLE DISCLAIMER: The recommendations outlined in this report are based on research and experience that suggest certain design and policy approaches can be adopted to reduce opportunities for crime. It is not possible to guarantee that actual crime will be reduced or eliminated if these recommendations are implemented.