ORLANDO, Fla. — Orlando city officials and police are working together to create a safer downtown.
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People wanting to enjoy the weekend nightlife downtown will have to pass by police first.
Barricades were set up Friday afternoon at Pine Street and Orange Avenue. The city has also brought back its weapon detection system signs, and K-9 units are ready to sniff out trouble.
The additional security is in response to last weekend, when somebody shot seven people.
Orlando street shutdown: night 1.— Nick Papantonis WFTV (@NPapantonisWFTV) August 6, 2022
Orange Avenue and parts of connecting roads will be closed off to vehicles around the bars in an attempt to prevent more shootings. This will happen every Friday and Saturday night for the foreseeable future. @wftvhttps://t.co/ONeGjnEOfD pic.twitter.com/qqg7FqORjM
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Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer is working with police and bar owners to make sure security is tight.
Cops will be all around the area, and businesses have hired extra off-duty officers to stand guard.
“The bar owners are in this with us,” Dyer said. “They’re just as concerned as we are on the actual reputation and safety of downtown. Additional cameras so we can have live feeds inside and outside are other measures that we are talking about.”
READ: Downtown Orlando security checkpoints begin this weekend
Six checkpoints will be set up around the entertainment district, something the city has done for big events surrounding holidays.
City officials couldn’t provide any numbers on arrests or gun seizures made during those times, but Dyer said he believes it deterred people.
The city also hopes to add metal detectors, although people will have to volunteer to walk through them.
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The Orange Avenue shutdown plan has been used before for major holidays like New Year’s and Saint Patrick’s Day to great success. This will be the first time it’s implemented on a normal night.
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