May 08, 2015 - 1:02 PM
PENTICTON - If you’re seeing less graffiti in Penticton’s downtown core these days, you're not alone.
The Downtown Penticton Association’s Graffiti Management Strategy has been in operation for nearly two months now, and the association's Executive Director Keri Milton says she has heard nothing but positives about the program.
The 12-month project, partially funded by the city, aims to have graffiti removed almost as soon as it appears. Contractor Peer Pressure has been contracted to visit the city on a daily basis to eradicate new tags, something that was clearly evident last week after the federal building on Winnipeg Street was vandalized. The tags were gone by the following day.
Milton just returned from making presentations to other Okanagan municipalities, explaining what Penticton is doing to control tagging. She said the District of West Kelowna, the City of Kelowna, Lake Country and Vernon were all interested in the Penticton pilot program.
Milton says it is 'too soon to say' if graffiti is decreasing in the downtown core, which is where the pilot program is operating. She says only four businesses have opted out of the program.
“We needed to clean up first. Now we can really start monitoring,” she says, noting the program has passed through the education and eradicate stages and is now in the enforcement stage.
In the meantime, in other parts of the city, the anti graffiti Facebook group 'Penticton Graffiti Task Force' continues its work to eradicate tags.
Group spokesperson Kyle Bachmann says the group had recently cleaned up some businesses along Main Street south of downtown.
“(Tagging is) decreasing in the downtown area, but getting worse in other areas,” he observes, noting graffiti on Channel Parkway infrastructure has increased.
The group intends to work with this year’s grad class and the downtown association to clean up graffiti.
Bachmann spoke to Princeton Council in April to describe what his group was doing.
“They showed me the tags in their community. They want to start a chapter there, because of the issues they are having with tagging. It’s bad everywhere,” Bachmann says.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015