You may automatically associate the Tenderloin with crime and drug use and you would not be wrong to do so. But the Tenderloin Community Benefit District hopes that its pilot program to install security cameras around the neighborhood may help do something about that. So reports Hoodline, which notes that the TLCBD is talking with local businesses about the possibility of installing cameras on the exterior of their buildings. At present, the pilot program consists of seven cameras, but that number could later be expanded.
“The idea is to deter crime because they know they’re being recorded," Steve Gibson of TLCBD told the publication. "Once a crime is committed, it will make it easier to prosecute; to catch the individuals.”
Unlike on San Francisco Muni buses where live video and sound is streamed to officials in real time, video will need to be requested by police to be viewed at a later time. However, should a crime occur, the idea is that police will now have more evidence to actively pursue suspected criminals.
Hoodline calls attention to a CBS 5 story from last September which pegs the number of security cameras in the Tenderloin at over 3,000. Most of the cameras, though, are private. The first of the new batch of cameras is set to be installed near Leavenworth and Golden Gate, and funds for their purchase and installation come from the Mayor's Office of Workforce and Economic Development, the Saint Francis Foundation, and Market Street property developer Shorenstein Residential.
As to why these cameras will succeed in deterring crime where the other 3,000 have failed — who knows? Regardless, Tenderloin Station Captain Teresa Ewins told Hoodline that the availability of additional footage is always a good thing.
"The cameras will be good because my community wants to be safe."