Factors of a surveillance environment that affect burglaries in commercial districts

Gidong Byun, Mikyoung Ha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


This study proposes a surveillance approach that will enhance safety in commercial districts. The authors identified physical factors that increase the likelihood of burglaries, and analyzed a commercial zone in relation to these factors to create a crime-free urban area. The study was conducted in Yeoksam-dong, a neighborhood of Gangnam-gu (the Gangnam District) in Seoul, Korea's capital. Yeoksam-dong has a large floating population. The authors found that: (1) In commercial districts, burglaries on footpaths accounted for most crimes, and illegal activities occurred in certain spaces. (2) In high crime-risk areas, views of the street from the first floor were relatively wider than those from the second floor. Night lighting was adequate, according to South Korean standards, but very uneven. (3) The surveillance environment used depended on road width (12 m was the baseline), since roads affect building size, and the installation criteria for streetlights were applied inconsistently. (4) The factors that affected burglaries in commercial zones were the street gradients (SG), the number of streetlights (STL), the viewing areas from the first floor (1F VA), and minimum levels of illumination (Min I). SG, STL, and Min I indicated a positive relationship with burglaries, while 1F VA showed a negative correlation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-80
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Asian Architecture and Building Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jan 15

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Architectural Institute of Japan. All rights reserved.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Architecture
  • Cultural Studies
  • Building and Construction
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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