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Joint Effort Aimed at Safer Neighborhoods

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April 19, 2005

Northwestern University and the City of Evanston have teamed up to promote a neighborhood safety program in the residential area west of the University campus.

In a letter to more than 1,400 households, Evanston Police and University Police ask for cooperation in a program designed to deter crime in the area bounded by Orrington Avenue, Green Bay Road, Emerson Street and Noyes Street.

The area includes many apartments rented by Northwestern students.

Evanston Police Chief Frank Kaminski and University Police Chief Bruce Lewis suggest property owners:

• Leave porch lights on for the next several months enhance security for residents and students.

• Ask Commonwealth Edison (1-866-639-3532) to install alley lights; there is no fee for the installation and the annual usage fee is minimal. Residents in Community Block Grant target areas in the neighborhood can be reimbursed for half the cost of alley lighting. Residents can call Sally Lufkin, Evanston Grants Administrator, at 847-866-2268 to determine if they live in a target area.

• Multi-family property owners in a target area can contact Lufkin about the Neighborhood Security Fencing program that provides a rebate for security improvements to their property.

• Install motion-sensitive lighting on porches and

• Stop delivery of mail and newspapers when away from home for an extended period.

Northwestern is encouraging students to use light timers which are available at the Norris Bookstore.

Information about this city-university safety initiative can be obtained from Lucile Krasnow, Northwestern special assistant for community relations, at 847-467-576 or l-krasnow@northwestern.edu, or Ron Walczak, Evanston Police crime prevention specialist, at 847-866-5019 or rwalczak@cityofevanston.org.

The safety initiative complements other projects involving the University and its neighbors in the area just west of the campus.

The University has installed four emergency “blue light” phones adjacent to neighboring residential areas. The phones, which provide immediate voice contact with University Police, can be used by any person who feels their safety is in jeopardy.

The phones are located adjacent to 1927 Orrington Ave. and 1801 Maple Ave. and at the northeast corner of Maple and Emerson and the southeast corner of Maple and Foster.

The University also will sponsor a community meeting on safety and other neighborhood issues in April, at a date to be determined, at the Family Institute, 618 Library Place. The meetings are held regularly to provide a forum for University leaders, students and city residents to discussion of issues of mutual concern. The community meetings are one phase of community outreach efforts by the University.

Other initiatives include Associated Student Government programs, coordinated by Jennifer McQuiston, a Medill School of Journalism junior who lives in the neighborhood and is the ASG’s Off-Campus Senator.

She said ASG plans to provide students living off campus with a form that they can fill out with their name, phone number and other information that can be shared with neighbors. The information is designed to improve communication between students and neighborhood residents. In this way, students can introduce themselves and residents can call students with questions and concerns.

Another ASG project is planned for May 29, the day after the annual student Dillo Day festivities. Students will canvass the neighborhood after the Memorial Day “Mayfest” weekend to clean up any debris remaining after the events that take place on campus.

In addition the University’s University Residential Life office maintains contact with students living in the neighborhood, providing information about “safe” partying, landlord issues and laws and local ordinances. The office also sends campus news updates to area residents to provide information about events that may affect them.

Residents can subscribe to the e-mail service by sending an e-mail to listserve@listserv.it.northwestern.edu. The e-mail request should have a blank subject line. The message should include “Subscribe CAMPUS UPDATES” and the sender’s first and last name.

Topics: University