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Mayor Brown cites progress in removing graffiti

Using one of the city’s news anti-graffiti weapons, a $1,200 power washer, Mayor Byron W. Brown sprayed graffiti off the face of a bridge abutment facing the Riverwalk off Niagara Street in the Black Rock section Friday afternoon.

“As Buffalo becomes a more bike-friendly and walkable city, we are proactively addressing quality-of-life issues including graffiti removal,” Brown said.

He was accompanied at the Riverwalk site by North District Councilman Joseph Golombek, Public Works Commissioner Steven Stepniak, members of the mayor’s Impact Team and Wilmer Olivencia, coordinator of the city’s Anti-Graffiti and Clean City Program.

“Maintaining the beauty of our neighborhoods, bike paths and waterfront is important as our city continues to grow,” the mayor added.

Brown said that, as of the end of July, more than 1,300 pieces of graffiti have been removed so far this year from buildings, stop signs, street signs, bridges and overpasses. He said the power washer comes in handy in removing graffiti on sites where there is no readily available water sources.

Mayoral aide Lorey Schultz said graffiti removal is actively addressed during regular “clean sweeps” by the city’s Anti-Graffiti Unit, which makes daily visual surveys of target areas. She said city residents with issues or concerns about graffiti are urged to call the 311 number to lodge complaints and alert city crews.