Temple Police will incorporate various campus safety services into the department’s new Police Public Safety Station on Cecil B. Moore Avenue near Sydenham Street. The station will house the university’s Emergency Medical Services team, Allied Universal and TUPD’s community policing team.
Currently, there is a TUPD employee stationed at the site around the clock, but the collaborative safety hub will be fully operational by the end of April, said Charlie Leone, the executive director of Campus Safety Services.
Due to increased foot traffic, a large population of students living off campus and complaints from residents in that area regarding trash and noise, Leone said TUPD’s presence on the west side of Broad Street will be a positive addition to the community.
“We’re going to establish this safety hub that’s going to have a lot of activity there, positive activity,” he added. “We’re going to work together and make it a safe area for everyone.”
Aside from the station’s safety components, there will be a multi-purpose space where TUPD can hold community meetings.
TUPD is headquartered at 12th and Montgomery Streets, which can be an issue for community residents west of Broad Street. This helped prompt the addition of the new location at Cecil B. Moore Avenue near Sydenham Street to bring TUPD closer to the community.
“People don’t have to come all the way over here because a lot of the neighbors that we speak with and work with are on the west side [of Broad Street],” he said.
Leone added that the community policing teams — officers who do community outreach — will be able to have a stronger connection to the community in this area.
“Instead of just being first responders, [community policing teams] can be talking to the neighbors even more, being part of the community, because we’re going to be right there.”
Local businesses owners see the addition of the station as a crime deterrent.
For more than a year, Cameron Smith has been a technician at iGeeks, a technology repair store on Cecil B. Moore Avenue near Sydenham Street. He said iGeeks experiences crime because it is a “luxury industry” that deals with expensive technology.
“[The station] could decrease the chance of me getting robbed,” Smith said. “I hope it increases response time.”
Smith added he had issues with Philadelphia Police’s response time in the past.
“People who have committed crimes could have been stopped with adequate response time,” he said.
Jason Kim, manager of D&J Hardware on Cecil B. Moore Avenue near Sydenham Street, said the area around his business is “already pretty safe.”
“As a business owner, if you go a few blocks north, south or west of here, you are concerned with safety,” he said. “But to have [the station], in terms of safety, makes it better.”
Students have differing opinions about the impact of the new station.
“I don’t care personally, because I never thought of being unsafe on campus as a male,” said Zach Schreffler, a senior finance major. “It’s more the females who feel unsafe, but the threat is still there.”
“It’s better to have [the station] more local rather than centralized on campus,” Schreffler added.
Lexie Ferko, a sophomore psychology major, said she feels safer with the new station near her off-campus apartment.
“I hope that the station will help with communication,” she added.
Leone said the station is intended for everyone in the community.
“Students think that we do things sometimes to bust their parties, but at the end of the day, we want everyone to be safe,” he said. “We want students to be safe. We want our neighbors to be safe, and we want to make sure that people are living cohesively.”
Kelly Brennan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @_KellyBrennan.