Campus safety through architecture, landscape architecture and urban design: UNM Newsroom

Campus safety through architecture, landscape architecture and urban design: UNM Newsroom

The style and design of indoor and out of doors areas has the electric power to shape not just how we use an location, but also how we experience about it. Design can assist notify no matter if an individual wishes to satisfy friends or shift via an spot promptly. It can even discourage crime. 

Crime Prevention Via Environmental Style and design (CPTED) is a multi-disciplinary tactic to criminal offense prevention that employs urban and architectural design and the management of built and organic environments to support discourage offender choices that precede criminal offense and foster emotions of security. 


The College of New Mexico’s Arranging, Structure and Development Section has utilized CPTED concepts in its building and landscape layouts for the earlier many several years, according to Amy Coburn, College Architect. Website visitors can observe the rules in locations like Johnson Centre, Smith Plaza, Physics Astronomy and Interdisciplinary Science (PAÍS) setting up and the new Campus Gateway at Central and Girard.

“UNM applies CPTED principles in creating our designed setting to cut down criminal offense and the fear of criminal offense,” Coburn reported. The CPTED rules consist of normal access manage, all-natural surveillance, territory command, and other design practices, which, when used to campus enhancement initiatives, make a visibly secure, cleanse, and accessible environments.”

A current analyze from Texas A&M College discovered that a neighborhood’s over-all feeling of cleanliness and the visual attributes of buildings can provide visible cues of treatment that are related with reduce rates of property and violent criminal offense.


UNM Gateway

A new gateway to The College of New Mexico was just lately unveiled on the northwest corner of Central Ave. and Girard Blvd.

This feeling of managed natural environment is integral to ensuring campus people truly feel secure and probable offenders are discouraged from generating criminal decisions on campus. The new demolition of wall constructions at the corner of Central Avenue and Girard Boulevard, together with the addition of unobstructive landscaping, an open up walkway and a 3D UNM monogram statue assisted visually reclaim a area that experienced grow to be connected with community safety problems.


Aaron Zahm, principal landscape architect with MRWM Landscape Architects, has aided structure numerous projects at UNM like the redevelopment of Smith Plaza and the Campus Gateway. He mentioned there is one more crucial aspect in the structure of safe and sound regions –– persons. 


“One of the massive concepts of CPTED is activating a area so there is all-natural surveillance and activity there that puts ownership and eyes on the region so that people who want to do negative points don’t experience at ease doing them there,” Zahm stated. 


There are several means to carry individuals into a area, irrespective of whether it be by means of interactive general public art, bike racks and strolling pathways or tables and shade that enable people to acquire in an area.

Smith Plaza before it was renovated for better accessibility and daily use.

Smith Plaza just before it was renovated for much better accessibility and day by day use.

Renovations to Smith Plaza use several of these ideas. Unveiled in 2017, updates to the “campus great room” replaced a substantial, brick spot with little shade with a number of outside rooms showcasing shade structures, environmentally friendly room, movable seating and a functionality region.

The redesign makes it possible for men and women to use Smith Plaza on a day-to-day basis somewhat than just for massive gatherings and makes the spot much more accessible to go via.


The $35 million renovation of Johnson Heart, opened in 2020, provided a number of updates to enhance aesthetics and protection, such as growth of a building with significant windows and the conversion of an asphalt roadway into a pedestrian-helpful, uniform walkway. 


“At all occasions of the day and evening you feel like you are component of a community that is both in the exterior place and within the setting up. You can talk with each individual other. That builds some perception of shared space and surveillance on the community spot,” Coburn mentioned.

Johnson Center

Updates to Johnson Heart designed the place much more pedestrian-helpful.

In addition to protection, designs for a school campus ought to choose into account how buildings will be utilized, how areas will stand the exam of time and the cultural historical past of the places in which they will be constructed. In New Mexico, incorporating historic design can present one of a kind challenges, but the PAÍS constructing strikes a stability amongst crime prevention and southwestern architecture.

“Courtyards are a truly significant part of New Mexico’s architectural heritage, but they can be genuinely difficult from a CPTED standpoint. Frequently they are enclosed all the way, they have incredibly little doorways and windows going through them,” Zahm reported. “The PAÍS courtyard is a great instance due to the fact of all the visibility into the space.” 

PAÍS’s courtyard utilizes tables, chairs and fountains to generate a feeling of privateness in the house without enclosing it. Windows bordering the courtyard also assist offer sightlines between the inside and exterior, showcasing the building’s action during the day.

PAIS Courtyard

PAÍS Courtyard provides a southwestern custom a fashionable twist.

The format of an space can also make folks truly feel much less safe and sound. Spots with slender walkways, little lights and couple of entry and exit factors can experience extra perilous. As UNM works to update more mature properties on its campus, university planners are wanting at how areas can be modernized and improved.


A 20-yr Campus Security Approach is in development from UNM PDC, the UNM Law enforcement Department, Hartman + Majewski Style Team and IMEG, a safety and protection guide. The approach, set to be finished in summer time 2023, will address CPTED applications, constructing entry controls, online video surveillance and other campus organizing matters. These safety tips will be integrated in the ongoing get the job done for the Built-in Campus Prepare.


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