The effect of Compartmentalisation on ASB reduction

Although this study refers to residential areas there may be crossover to business developments or mixed developments. This will be especially interesting to those businesses planning or constructing developments.


By Victoria Elisabeth Ellis

Compartmentalisation has recently been introduced to target anti-social behaviour (ASB) in housing developments that are vulnerable to this type of crime as a result of unrestricted access to flat buildings. Due to its novelty, there has been limited evaluation on the effects of compartmentalisation on crime reduction and even less so on ASB reduction. Such evaluation was therefore undertaken by assessing the impact of compartmentalisation on ASB in Secured by Design (SBD) estates. Using a qualitative approach, telephone interviews were conducted with residents, Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) officers and estate managers from Belvedere Park estate and Erith Park estate, and a thematic analysis was performed to interpret the findings of this research.

The findings demonstrate that compartmentalisation can contribute to the reduction of certain types of ASB incidents, and presents additional benefits including enhanced community and personal safety within housing estates. However, the main limitation of compartmentalisation is  that the security measure is unable to account for all forms of ASB in residential estates.

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