Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Waste containers as bomb receptacles

It's far too soon to draw conclusions from what happened in Boston yesterday, other than recognizing that we are going to have to significantly extend and expand our protocols for event planning to be very robust with regard to security and safety matters.

There are people who do take advantage of events and festivals to get their message out.

For example, the Zendik commune (They sell "Stop bitching, start a revolution" bumper stickers, see this article from the Washington City Paper) come out to street festivals to sell their wares, but on the street--not paying for a booth.  Other people and organizations are known for doing this.

Protesting the Gangster Courts in BrooklandWhen I was a Main Street manager we organized an event that got some advance press in the Washington Post, and clearly the person who operates this protest vehicle (often it is parked on Capitol Hill) saw the piece and figured if he came to Brookland during our event he could reach new audiences.

Transportation systems and festivals and special events (e.g., the bombing at the Atlanta Olympics) are great opportunities for mischief and mayhem.

-- Planning And Managing Security For Major Special Events: Guidelines for Law Enforcement, US Dept. of Justice
-- Event Security Planning Tool, Rural Domestic Preparedness Consortium
-- Special issue, Special Event Security: Defending Against CBRNE, Domestic Preparedness Journal
-- National Special Security Events: Transportation Planning for Planned Special Events, Federal Highway Administration

And it does put into perspective increasing distaste on the part of cities for closing off major streets for special events like big street festivals, because it stresses other elements of the mobility network.

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At 8:56 AM, Anonymous charlie said...

Or do like the French do --- move from heavy metal container that turn into sharpnel into o-rings that hold plastic bags.

At 9:33 AM, Blogger Richard Layman said...

I need to get out more. Yes. It does require more frequent collectionl but that's probably a good thing.

At 10:10 AM, Anonymous charlie said...

Don't worry -- we all need to get out more! It is one of the founding stories of modern security studies; sort of like space-race era million dollar pen vs. a pencil.

I actually think polystrene would make an excellent trash container.

At 2:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Am not sure that the metal containers were the problem...

"One of the explosives contained shards of metal and ball bearings, and another contained nails, the person said."

At 6:18 PM, Blogger Richard Layman said...

... as a place to hide a bomb.


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