Creating Defensible Space   [open pdf - 4MB]

All Defensible Space programs have a common purpose: They restructure the physical layout of communities to allow residents to control the areas around their homes. This includes the streets and grounds outside their buildings and the lobbies and corridors within them. The programs help people preserve those areas in which they can realize their commonly held values and lifestyles. Defensible Space relies on self-help rather than on government intervention, and so it is not vulnerable to government's withdrawal of support. It depends on resident involvement to reduce crime and remove the presence of criminals. It has the ability to bring people of different incomes and race together in a mutually beneficial union. For low-income people, Defensible Space can provide an introduction to the benefits of main-stream life and an opportunity to see how their own actions can better the world around them and lead to upward mobility. This document aims to continue the growth and evolution of Defensible Space as both a criminological concept and a proven strategy for enhancing our Nation's quality of urban life.

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