Exclusive BD+C survey shows reaction to Sandy Hook tragedy

More than 60% of AEC professionals surveyed by BD+C said their firms experienced heightened interest in security measures from school districts they worked with. 

December 05, 2013 |
Rob Cassidy

December 14 will mark the one-year anniversary of the shooting of 20 second-grade students at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newtown, Conn. 

An exclusive survey of 462 architects, engineers, and contractors by Building Design+Construction shows that more than 60% said their firms experienced heightened interest in security measures from school districts they worked with. 

The survey also documents AEC firms' use of numerous security products and systems, including access control and video surveillance systems, ID badge readers, protective lighting, and intrusion detection systems.

Three of five respondents (62.1%) recorded at least some bump in inquiries from school districts following the December 14, 2012, shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary. A substantial group (29.9%) said there was either no heightened response, or that conditions were more or less business as usual.


AEC firms are installing plenty of access control, communications, protective lighting, and video surveillance systems in K-12 schools, judging by the high level of response to specification or us of these components. Yet barely half have employed intrusion detection (51.3%) or identification systems (50.6%), which security consultants say should be important elements of any school security system.


Additional findings from the survey will be published in the January 2014 issue of BD+C. For a copy of the report (due to be published January 15, 2014), email David Barista, BD+C Editor-in-Chief at [email protected].

Rob Cassidy | Building Team Blog

Rob Cassidy (“ClimateGrouch”) is editorial director of Building Design+Construction. A city planner, he is the author of several books, including “Livable Cities,” and was a co-founder of the Friends of the Chicago River.

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