The Rand Corp. is tackling the challenging need for security at U.S. shopping malls head-on with a new report, “Reducing Terrorism Risk at Shopping Centers, An analysis of Potential Security Options.”
Last June, a U.S. Justice Department-funded report by the Police Foundation found anti-terrorism security at shopping malls is seriously lacking. Rand wades right into that situation, acknowledging that, while perceived hindrances to shopping may perturb mall operators, they are advisable anyway. The Santa Monica, CA, research institute offers 39 prioritized security measures to reduce the risk of terrorist attacks at enclosed shopping centers.
Rand’s report notes that the impact of stronger security on shopping center revenues depends on how shoppers and merchants perceive the terrorism threat. Some shoppers may dislike increased security and stay away, while others may perfer to go to centers with higher security because they feel safer there. (While the Rand report does not assess the probability of attacks at U.S. shopping centers, it notes that there have been more than 60 terrorist attacks against shopping centers in 21 countries since 1998.)
PRO Barrier Engineering has a ready solution for a Rand recommendation that vehicle barriers be placed at mall pedestrian entrances to block suicide car bombers. Our B-Cube, or Basic Bollard Barrier, represents a refinement in bollard technology. It uses an in-ground socket into which customers can insert a steel bollard of almost any vehicle stopping power. In addition, the bollards can be supplied in over 250 colors or with a digital finish to mimic architectural materials (granite, marble, brushed aluminum, etc.). And, because they are installed in in-ground sockets, the bollards can be removed temporarily to allow access by mall maintenance vehicles.
Security and shopper access need not be incompatible. The B-Cube demonstrates why this is so.