Breaking the mold of traditional city surveillance

The City of Calgary is building a smarter, safer city through integrated IoT solutions

“It has been great listening to our operational guard staff share how amazed they are with the new surveillance technologies, especially the network radar detectors and bispectral PTZ cameras. They want them installed everywhere!” Alex Lee, Security Advisor, Technical Operations, Corporate Security, City of Calgary.


Over the past half-decade, Calgary has earned a reputation as one of the most forward-thinking and innovative cities in Canada. Since beginning its rapid push for smart city integration, the city has won awards that include the 2018 Alberta Minister’s Award for Municipal Excellence and a 2019 Smart 50 Award for influential Internet of Things (IoT) projects. One of the driving forces behind the smart city initiative is the goal of making the city a safer place. Calgary has long used thousands of traditional analog cameras to monitor over 900 sites but quickly warmed to the idea of modernizing the city’s security network with digital technology to improve its capabilities and efficiencies.


Working with service-based systems integrator Convergint Technologies, The City of Calgary began installing AXIS Q6000-E PTZ (pan/tilt/zoom) Network Cameras in key locations, while also using AXIS Q74 and AXIS M70 Video Encoders to digitize the streams of existing analog cameras and bring them into the city’s new XProtect® video management software (VMS) by Milestone. Using AXIS Perimeter Defender video analytic, the city was able to set up alerts to notify security teams of potential dangers. The City also deployed a suite of Axis tools including network radar detectors, thermal cameras, bispectral PTZ cameras combining visual and thermal video streams, and network audio devices, all configured into an Integrated Security Center outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment.


The increased coverage and operational efficiency enabled by Calgary’s smart city effort have helped create a more proactive approach to mitigate crime. Alerts enabled in areas such as Olympic Park and City parkades have helped reduce the number of potentially dangerous after-hours trespassers, while the high-quality cameras utilized in areas like City Hall have helped security teams compile a more comprehensive list of dangerous individuals entering public areas. The solution has also found success outside of traditional security, as network cameras have been deployed for purposes as unique as monitoring water levels in city lakes.

Related links

AXIS D2050-VE Network Radar Detector
AXIS Q6000-E PTZ Dome Network Camera
Safe cities