Environmental design

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This is a page providing background in a specific field of expertise

Environmental design refers to the process of addressing environmental parameters in planning programs, policies or concepts. It is part of the "10 principles of crime prevention" following a U.K. initiative.

Security related aspects and benefits

  • Environmental design can impact social/criminal/terrorist behaviour in a positive or negative way.
  • Environmental design can mitigate, lessen or even prohibit criminal or terrorist acts.
  • Environmental design can reduce crime and terrorist risks and consequences.
  • Environmental design can decrease vulnerability and increase resilience.
  • Specific environmental design of built infrastructure can limit the damage of terrorist attacks.

Approaches how to address it

  • Get familiar with environmental design planning principles;
  • Get familiar with general design aspects and structural/material aspects;
  • Consider designing out principles; [1]
  • Get familiar with initiatives facilitating environmental design; [2]
  • Integrate considerations on response and emergency measures in the planning process;
  • Integrate citizens through communication and participation methods.

Environmental design principles addressing counter-terrorism

Structural planning principles, according to CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design),are:

  • Access control;
  • Stand off distances, to keep people and bomber vehicles away from targets;
  • Laminated glass;
  • Framed structures;
  • Bombshelter areas etc.

Related subjects

Footnotes and references

  1. See e.g. HM Government. Retrieved from: http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/publications/counter-terrorism/crowded-places/design-tech-issues?view=Binary [last access: 2012-05-23].
  2. See e.g. International CPTED Association. Retrieved from: http://www.cpted.net/ [last access: 2012-10-04].