CLEVELAND, Tenn. — Cleveland's greenway may be monitored by security cameras in the near future.
Today, the Cleveland City Council is scheduled to review a $62,345 proposal to purchase 10 portable cameras as a means of combating vandalism on the city's growing greenway.
"Over the last several months and as the greenway continues to expand, the vandalism on the greenway has caused the need for security cameras to assist in preventing this from repeat occurrences," said Assistant City Manager Melinda Carroll in a July 21 memo to the City Council.
The FlashCAM devices, manufactured by Q-Star, would be placed on existing greenway poles and are capable of taking photos as well as recording, Carroll said.
The portable devices' battery packs are solar-powered and the system is "ruggedized," meaning it's designed for harsher conditions, and "features wireless download and uses proprietary voice/flash technology," said Steve Hillsman, president of Q-Star, in a letter to Carroll.
City staff have reviewed several surveillance systems and have agreed that "this system is the technology that will help the city and offer a safe environment for the citizens as they enjoy walking, running or biking on the greenway," Carroll said.
Cleveland already has moved forward with another initiative intended to prevent greenway vandalism.
On July 13, the Cleveland City Council voted 7-0 on the final passage of an ordinance that prohibits juveniles under 18 years of age from being on the greenway between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. unless they are accompanied and supervised by a responsible adult.
The new ordinance was enacted at the request of the Cleveland Police Department.
Signs concerning the new greenway rules are expected to be posted in the near future, Carroll said.
In related business, the Greenway Board has been evaluating the feasibility of constructing a greenway alongside Candies Creek, which is located at the western edge of the city, according to a July 21 memo sent city leaders by City Planner Corey Divel.
The proposed greenway "could ultimately extend from Fletcher Park in the south to the new proposed elementary school along Georgetown Road in the north," Divel said.
Possible greenway spurs could connect to Cleveland Middle School and the wetland mitigation site walking trail located at the former Rolling Hills Golf Course, he said.
Securing an easement across an 11-acre tract, currently owned by Wells Fargo and located between Cleveland Middle School and Westwood Baptist Church, would allow for the creation of "a direct path" between the middle school and the proposed elementary school, Divel said.
"While no funds have currently been set aside for this greenway, the idea is to proactively attain the necessary easements so when the time comes to begin construction, we are well-positioned to begin," Divel said.
Paul Leach is based in Cleveland. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.