MISSION ACCOMPLISHED: Despite Mayoral Boasts, Gang Graffiti Remains On Lakeview Seawall

Left: Photo of graffiti submitted to the city for removal on July 16.
Right: Same location with today’s
Redeye included for timing validation.
The city says the graffiti was removed on July 22.

One month ago, CWB told you about large swaths of gang graffiti that have been plastered on the lakefront seawall near 3700 N. Recreation Drive. The tags are a couple hundred yards from the parking lot where two men were shot in a gang confrontation on July 6.

We reported the markings to the city on the day of our report and the city’s Data Portal says the graffiti removal was completed on July 22nd.

None of the graffiti has been removed. In fact, there are even more gang tags now than before.

More graffiti included in our July 16 report (top)
and the same spot today (bottom).

We sent Streets and Sanitation a message about the discrepancy on August 8 and emailed Alderman James Cappleman’s office, too. Neither responded.

So, we were particularly amused this afternoon when the City Hall PR factory pumped out a press release headlined, “Mayor Emanuel, Department Of Streets and Sanitation Announce 46 Percent Improvement in Response Times to Graffiti Removal Requests”:

“Rapid graffiti removal is one of the best deterrents for future graffiti vandalism,” said

…y mas.

Mayor Emanuel. “By constantly improving our graffiti removal efficiency, decreasing removal response time and increasing graffiti vandalism penalties and fines, Chicago is establishing a comprehensive and effective citywide approach to fight graffiti vandalism in all neighborhoods and keep our neighborhoods clean.”

Of course, it’s easy to get those response times down if you click “completed” on tasks that were never actually performed.

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CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets. Our editorial email address is news@cwbchicago.com