Posts Tagged ‘graffiti’

Commercial Pollution

October 18, 2008

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Plastic signage stapled to telephone poles along the Commissioners Road E. arterial. Should business be allowed to pollute our visual environment by using telephone poles as free billboards?

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Because they’re allowed to?

January 20, 2008

Some interesting pedestrian-related questions posed by ‘Steve’ in the ‘Friday free-for-all’ thread on Dan Brown’s LFP blog. The LFP doesn’t offer hyperlinks or formatting capability and my response is fairly long, so I’ll post it here.

“Why do people park their cars so that 1/2 of it is over the sidewalk when they have several feet of free space in their driveway?”

A lack of respect for pedestrians and an expectation that they’ll get away with it? Have you spoken to the property owner? Failing that, have you tried calling the police and asking that they attend and lay a charge of obstruction?

“Our 2 neighbours have a wooden fence on the side of their properties, as they have a walkway to a school between them. Kids…sprayed graffiti on it but the homeowners are told by the city that they must clean it. The city however will not agree to clean the graffiti off the sidewalk of the walkway. The kids are not supposed to be able to buy spray cans and yet, more graffiti. Couldn’t we just ban these cut through walkways and sell the existing land back to the home owners?”

Banning walkways is a terrible idea, unless the streets are laid out in a grid pattern. Otherwise, you’re unfairly interfering with the mobility rights of pedestrians. The way that some neighbourhoods are designed, removing a walkway would necessitate having to walk significant extra distance simply to go from one street to the adjacent one. Remember that, unlike driving a car, walking is a natural right. Why should pedestrians suffer because of a vandal?

If it’s a privately-owned fence there’s no reason that the city should have to clean it. But it should be removed as quickly as possible, because allowing it to remain simply invites more of the same. Is it a plain fence? Perhaps painting a nice landscape on it would be a disincentive. Or invite neighbourhood kids to come up with an acceptable design and then provide the materials for them to paint it?

The sidewalk is a different matter. It’s publicly owned, and it should be up to the city to maintain it. Care to identify who it was that said the city wouldn’t remove it? Has your ward councillor been contacted?

Is the walkway in a Neighbourhood Watch area? If not, have you considered trying to start one?

Final thought… people who are interested in pedestrian-related issues should consider contacting me about supporting my proposal for a Pedestrian Committee. Our politicians aren’t going to pay much more than lip-service to them until they feel public pressure to do so.