DOCAS is a free Christchurch City Council initiative, reporting to the Safer Christchurch Interagency Group.

DOCAS aims to help Christchurch become the safest city in New Zealand by using crime prevention through environmental design (CPTED) in rebuild projects and other significant developments.

Developments requiring Resource Consents in the Central City Business Zone are required to consider CPTED. CPTED can add value to your project, without delaying it, while reducing ongoing operating and managing costs.

CPTED looks at the environment in which crime can occur and designs areas to make them safer and more appealing to live or work in. Enhancing features such as landscaping, lighting, outdoor seating and improving lines of sight can eliminate hiding places and make areas safer. CPTED provides the greatest value for the least cost when applied ‘a little bit often’ from the early stages in a design.

A child plays in the middle of the street that is lined with houses

Temporary Accommodation Villages have undergone CPTED assessments

Who the service is for

All developments can benefit from our free crime prevention design advice and any development (new build or rebuild) that has publically accessible space in it or around it is eligible to use the service.

Available services

We can help you from concept through to post-completion, with 'big picture' issues through to small, site specific details.

We can work with you in several ways:

  • CPTED Clinics: a leading CPTED consultant and the Council’s Crime Prevention Advisors will provide advice, ideas and recommendations on your specific safety and security needs.
  • Pre-application advice: mitigation advice for developments that require CPTED to be considered for Resource Consent Applications.
  • CPTED statement advice: guidance for applicants who are required to prepare CPTED Assessments and CPTED Statements when required for Resource Consent.
  • Seminars: sessions for professional and community groups, introducing safe design and explaining the benefits of CPTED.
  • CPTED Training Workshops: for anyone interested in learning about CPTED. Two day, practical workshops teaching CPTED principles and processes by working on real projects.

Injury Prevention through Environmental Design (IPTED)

IPTED is a complementary discipline that uses the same techniques as CPTED, but focuses on designing places that reduce the risk of personal injury. We can provide IPTED advice for suitable developments.

Contact us

To find out more, or to make an appointment for any of the Design Out Crime Advisory Services, please contact us or email

Useful resources

We also have some documents and useful links which contain more information on CPTED:

CPTED and the Christchurch rebuild:

Environmental Criminology and Crime Analysis (ECCA) Annual Symposium held in Christchurch 2015: