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SSCVA to get new security cameras

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The South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority plans to keep a clearer watch on who may be in and around the Indiana Welcome Center with the purchase of new security cameras.

Nikki Lopez, interim executive director and CEO, said the agency’s existing security camera system is outdating and does not provide the imaging necessary to aid law enforcement if there is a problem.

“About a month ago, somebody hit the charging station. It was a hit and run,” she said, adding the quality of the videos from the current cameras was so poor officials could not see what happened.

Lopez said it is important for the bureau to get the cameras updated before the Calumet Voices, National Stories exhibitions get underway April 19.

The exhibit was developed by the Field Museum in collaboration with the Calumet Heritage Area. The SSCVA is the first stop after the exhibit’s debut at the Field Museum in Chicago. Lopez said the increased exhibit space at the welcome center means there will be additional exhibits in the installment.

This new installment of the dynamic Calumet Voices, National Stories exhibition series showcases Calumet’s natural environment, industrial might, and cultural richness – and how they combine to create this unique landscape.

The bureau’s current camera system is about 10 years old.

VST Security Solutions LLC of Munster will provide the system for a cost of $19,880, according to board documents.

Jeff Sanderson, video production manager, said VST was the only vendor to provide new camera equipment instead of trying to retrofit the existing equipment.

Andy Qunell, board chairman, said 10 years is a long time when dealing with electronic equipment, which can quickly become obsolete.

The new system will replace the 27 existing cameras and add a new 4K camera on the back of the building. Twenty-six of the cameras will be 4K and two at the front and side entryways will have license plate readers.

The system has a 30-day memory so video from the cameras will be backed up and stored by the bureau, Lopez said. The board unanimously approved the purchase.

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