Ottawa is expected to see 1,800 drug crimes this year. That number is up from 1,600 crimes the year before.

Ottawa Police Chief Vern White credits the new street crime unit with the discovery of more illegal activity.

The unit is a pilot project limited to the city's downtown core.

White says it is likely the project will not only continue, but expand to include the City's east and west ends.

So far in 2008, 899 drug crimes have been reported. About 500 of those incidents involved marijuana and 330 involved cocaine.