Council starts graffiti blitz

Council starts graffiti blitz

By Katie Johnson

Unsightly graffiti and tagging in Docklands will be removed from shopfronts, bridges and building facades under a new City of Melbourne initiative.

Using some of the $100 million Melbourne City Recovery fund, the council will focus on removing graffiti in high places that would normally be out of reach.

Lord Mayor Sally Capp said the cleaning blitz would ensure Melbourne was sparkling clean for workers returning to the city.

“Unwanted graffiti and tagging is a blight on the city. We can now literally go above and beyond to remove graffiti from hard to reach places,” the Lord Mayor said.

“The significant cost of hiring elevated working platforms means that the removal of graffiti from heights above three to four metres is cost-prohibitive.”

“This joint funding means we are able to contract two additional staff and hire the necessary equipment to remove graffiti from heights, including above shop awnings, bridges and on the sides and facades of buildings.”

So far the council has identified the CBD and a number of Docklands streets as priority areas for cleaning and will be adding more destinations over the next six months.

Last month, the council’s new public toilet at Harbour Esplanade near NewQuay was defaced by taggers and the resulting graffiti was only removed some weeks later by high-pressure hose (pictured).

Graffiti removal services for tagging at street level will be boosted between now and the end of June 2021 as part of the program.

The council has hired two additional graffiti management vehicles and two more contract staff to proactively control and clean the areas on a daily rather than weekly basis.

The recovery fund will also be put towards additional waste services, including more hard waste collections for businesses and residents, deep street cleaning, additional cleaning of outdoor dining parklets and increased dumped rubbish removal.

Currently the CoM invests almost $1 million on graffiti removal annually and removes around 50,000 sqm, or more than two MCGs worth of graffiti from private and public spaces, every year.

Lord Mayor Sally Capp said the new initiative would ensure Melbourne was cleaner than ever.

“Our community has been clear that graffiti removal is important to them and they want more action taken to address tagging across the municipality,” she said •

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