Lower Manhattan Security Initiative

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The Lower Manhattan Security Initiative is an initiative to increase surveillance efforts in Lower Manhattan, New York City, New York, United States.[1] [2]

The New York City Police Department and private companies intend to install over 3,000 new security cameras in Lower Manhattan, as well as 100 automatic number plate recognition devices which are intended to scan plates and compare the numbers with information in a database. Additionally, the activities the cameras are programmed to pick up on include the delivery of packages. Other features of the system include mobile roadblocks, which could swivel into the streets and block traffic,[1] and radiation detectors.[2]

According to police spokesman Paul J. Browne, the footage from the cameras would be monitored from a center staffed by police officers and private employees.[1]

Carrying out the plan to its full extent is estimated to end up costing around $US 90 million (excluding the cost of radiation detectors),[3] with the Department of Homeland Security paying for 10 million of this, and the city government covering 15 million.[4] As of July 9, 2007, over 100 cameras are already in place.[1]

In 2009 an extension to Midtown was announced. [5]

The program was further extended in cooperation with Microsoft and is fully active as of 2012. It is known as the Domain Awareness System.

The plan has been compared to the ring of steel around the City of London, the financial district at the center of Greater London. The City of London had 649 local government operated cameras in 2011[6] (often wrong quoted to be 500,000 cameras[7]).


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Buckley, Cara (2007-07-09). "New York Plans Surveillance Veil for Downtown". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2007-09-22.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 Hogarty, Dave (2007-09-07). "Downtown Surveillance Network Proceeds". Gothamist. Gothamist LLC. Retrieved 2007-09-22.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Eisenberg, Carol (2007-09-07). "New NYC cameras will watch every move in Financial District". Newsday. Newsday Inc. Retrieved 2007-09-22.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. "Mayor Bloomberg Presents $57.1 Billion FY 2008 Preliminary Budget". NYC.gov. The City of New York. 2007-01-25. Retrieved 2007-09-22.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. ""Ring of Steel" coming to Midtown". WNYC News.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "The Price of Privacy: How local authorities spent £515m on CCTV in four years" (PDF). Big Brother Watch. February 2012. p. 21. Retrieved 4 February 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "FactCheck: how many CCTV cameras? - Channel 4 News". Channel4.com. Retrieved 2009-05-08.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>