Tuesday, August 4, 2009

New Low for Graffiti "Artists" UPDATED x2

We here at BoogieDowner have no problem with graffiti as a creative outlet, so long as it is done in a respectful, artistic way in appropriate areas (e.g. Bronx-based Tats Cru's work found all over the City). However, the recent uptick in ugly tags around Bedford Park has us feeling a bit frustrated. In recent months we've noticed more graffiti not only on mailboxes, garages, and storefronts, but also on residential homes. Didn't there used to be some sort of unspoken agreement that graffiti writers wouldn't hit people's private homes back in the day, or am I imagining that?

Well, when we pulled onto the Mosholu Parkway after exiting the Bronx River Parkway this past Sunday, we were disgusted to see that taggers had vandalized the beautiful World War I monument at the Hull Avenue intersection. What always stood as a beautiful commemorative piece now looks like this:
This is an outrageous display of brazen disregard for the honor of our country and those who put their lives on the line to fight for it. So what do we do to fix this problem?

First off, Bedford Park residents need to call 311 ASAP to log complaints about the defacement of the World War I monument. Once you get the complaint number at the end of the phone call, please send an email to Community Board 7 (info@bronxcb7.info) asking them to please follow up on the issue and provide the complaint number you were given. Be forewarned: my 311 call took a whopping 20 minutes to complete. The operators are having trouble understanding what space the monument is located within and Mosholu Parkway isn't showing up in their system. The key is to keep telling them that the land is maintained by the Parks Department, that way they know where to refer the complaint. Tell them it's the intersection of Mosholu Parkway and Hull Avenue.

If you see graffiti around your neighborhood that needs to be cleaned up, get involved with local community groups and alert your local Councilmember (they can help through the Graffiti Free NYC program) to the problems.

There's a vacant garage here on 201st Street that is a huge target for graffiti and we were always completely frustrated by it. So we asked Bedford Mosholu Community Association what we could do about it and were happy to learn that they would secure paint and supplies for us to use to clean the garage doors up. We painted the place, and after about a month it was hit by taggers again. So we simply went right out and painted over the tags immediately, and it's been about another month or so and it's still clean. It's kind of fun - we monitor it like it's our baby and love walking past it and seeing it cleaned up. Here she is, in all her clean glory:

(We're eventually going to paint the brick as well )

If you see graffiti on the uptick in your hood, get involved. Talk to your elected officials, community groups, or even your building's super. You just never know what resources are out there to help you get sites cleaned up.

Update #1: A statement from Mr. Fernando Tirado, CB7 District Manager:
If people go to www.BronxCB7.info and click on the “Submit a Complaint” link, not only can they report complaints to us 24 hours a day, they can also get a reference number for their record and call or e-mail us to request the status of their complaint. The database also allows people to input their 311 complaint number, which we strongly encourage people to do because it gets registered on the city’s system and we can research the status online.

Update #2: The monument has been cleaned!!!!!!!!
This must be a citywide record for graffiti cleanup. The monument was vandalized just this past weekend, and sometime today, Tuesday, the site was powerwashed and restored to its former glory! Big ups to Community Board 7 and the Parks Department for their diligence concerning this matter. Here she is, all cleaned up:


Unknown said...

I am all for Graff. Love it in fact. But that is sickening. I bet that writer has no idea about WWI or the events that even lead up to it. So it is no wonder there is a lack of respect.

anthony rivieccio said...


Erin if i might though...........

Yes 311 map (thats also unbelieveable) can not find mosholu parkway...so sometimes if you tell them an address on Mosholu parky and indicate (North or South) it will still take a moment but they will find it

And Yes, councilman Koppell HAS FOR YEARS set up a program with Bedford park resident particapation.

but its getting so troubling.......from living in what I call one of the best communities in The Bronx tooooooooo

Anonymous said...

Thank you for bringing attention to this. Bedford Park should be one of the nicest neighborhoods in the city. Unfortunately while the NYPD and Mayor's Office blatantly lie to the public about crime being down, quality of life is drastically suffering.

Sad Eyes said...

Sad news. My guess is whoever it was that tagged that monument doesn't know much about WW1 and has no respect for anything of value.

No doubt this graffiti artist's great grandparents were going to the bathroom in the streets of whatever country they came from while WW1 was going on, them came to this countryr and started throwing their garbage out their own windows.

Sad Eyes said...

What I mean by my statement above, is that too often, people don't have respect for what came before them, so they don't value what they have.

This allows for things like graffiti and litter to slowly destroy places that have stood with pride for many years.

anthony rivieccio said...

as you may know erin
NWB Democrats wrote a letter (and calls) to CB7 and promised later in the year, a quality of life summit

BUT CHEERS TODAY GO FOR......CB7, Dept of Parks, Oliver Koppells office AND EVERYONE (including you) involved


AND PS. The Garage is continusly looking GREATTTT

Anonymous said...

Sad to see this crap going on, Mosholu Pkwy is beautiful n peaceful. These punks have little eduction in the history of war and what are soldiers done for them! Prison life is their call to destiny!
I called Oliver Koppels office about the tagging problem that is happing on E 204 St n Bainbrige. His staff took down the Iocations I noticed the mess is being painted over.
Call 311 and give the locations and when you see the punks in the act call 911.
Ask your super n landlord to clean remove the tags. Talk with local store owners if they can they help find a solution in cleaning the graffitti vandlalism on a regular shedule.