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  #41  
Old Posted May 22, 2019, 1:16 AM
jtown,man jtown,man is offline
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Originally Posted by MonkeyRonin View Post
I do. I appreciate the calligraphy; the democratic occupation of public space; as well as the multi-layered, organic visual effect. Plus it just livens up typically derelict and blank urban spaces.

Sure beats a blank wall, in my opinion:

Kensington by Eric H, on Flickr






I think the mid/late-00s were really "peak dirtiness" in Toronto. You had the same post-amalgamation public realm neglect and aging infrastructure as today; but gentrification & redevelopment hadn't yet come full swing so there were also still plenty of vacant, derelict, and rundown buildings that hadn't yet been restored or turned into condos. More graffiti too - given that property owners had less propensity to clean their buildings.

If I had to pick a specific point in time, the garbage strike over the summer of 2009 would definitely be it.
You like gang members and idiots spraying crap on private and public property?

I don't think you would like your front door spray painted.
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  #42  
Old Posted May 22, 2019, 1:27 AM
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Except for the urine stench in hot cities like LA without any rain to wash it away.
Does it rain in the summer months of Vancouver?

-----

The only city I've been in where the stench of urine is overwhelming was New York. L.A. not so much even though it's dry for half the year, dryness is your friend. Dog shit [human shit as well] won't stink in dry environments, it becomes hard as a rock, almost petrified.
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  #43  
Old Posted May 22, 2019, 2:18 AM
llamaorama llamaorama is online now
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Want to hear a dirty story?

I work in the business office section of a manufacturing company with a huge shop employing 500+ workers doing shifts around the clock. All of our workers are required to wear disposable earplugs which they can get out of dispensers. When they are done with their earplugs they like to throw them on the ground.

One time rain overflowed the ditches alongside the road going to plant and floated all the dead leaves and buoyant trash into big mats that settled on the road. There were PILES of those earplugs. You could use a shovel to scoop them up. It was horrifying.

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i see these kinds of areas up close - even somewhat wealthy suburbs - and they are disgusting beneath the greenery.
I see this when I go for walks. You can be in a really nice area with landscaping, but the more grass and shrubbery there is the more crap accumulates. And the mowers shred up all the litter into tiny pieces that get settled into the grass and can't be practically cleaned up. As you mentioned, in brushy areas there's a solid carpet of smashed up shredded litter embedded in the weeds and buses. I don't know what the solution to this is, except to keep people from littering less to begin with. Rolling trash bins help in residential areas, but apartment complexes and businesses don't do a good job keeping their dumpster areas clean so trash can escape and get floated or blown away.
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  #44  
Old Posted May 22, 2019, 6:02 PM
edale edale is offline
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Originally Posted by Sun Belt View Post
Does it rain in the summer months of Vancouver?

-----

The only city I've been in where the stench of urine is overwhelming was New York. L.A. not so much even though it's dry for half the year, dryness is your friend. Dog shit [human shit as well] won't stink in dry environments, it becomes hard as a rock, almost petrified.
lol you're not walking around the right parts of LA then. In the summer and fall when there has been no rain in LA for months, the piss smell takes over large parts of Downtown LA. When you have homeless people who treat the streets and sidewalks like urinals and you don't have any rain to wash it away, you're gonna have pretty nasty and smelly streets.
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  #45  
Old Posted May 22, 2019, 6:29 PM
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Originally Posted by jtown,man View Post
You like gang members and idiots spraying crap on private and public property?

I don't think you would like your front door spray painted.

Gang graffiti isn't really a thing except in areas with a heavy gang presence. And where it does exist it's pretty obvious - it's meant to be explicit, not the weird sort of hybrid urban exploration-calligraphy sport your run-of-the-mill taggers engage in.


http://dcshrines.blogspot.com/2010/0...or-samuel.html



I actually live in a building that has quite a bit of spray painting and my windows face towards a very heavily graffitied lot and I don't mind it at all. Again, beats a blank brick wall. Though, worth noting that even I don't approve of graffiti on architecturally valuable buildings, public art, or nature. Sides of buildings, alleyways, and other underused or derelict urban spaces are fair game though.
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  #46  
Old Posted May 22, 2019, 6:35 PM
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Gang graffiti isn't really a thing except in areas with a heavy gang presence.
not true in chicago's case.

i sometimes see gang tags even in neighborhoods that don't have a "heavy gang presence". that shit creeps around all over this city, sometimes subversively so.

that's probably why chicago is so hyper-vigilant in removing graffiti compared to a city like toronto with 1/100th of the gang violence problem that chicago has.
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  #47  
Old Posted May 22, 2019, 7:39 PM
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Originally Posted by llamaorama View Post
Want to hear a dirty story?

I work in the business office section of a manufacturing company with a huge shop employing 500+ workers doing shifts around the clock. All of our workers are required to wear disposable earplugs which they can get out of dispensers. When they are done with their earplugs they like to throw them on the ground.

One time rain overflowed the ditches alongside the road going to plant and floated all the dead leaves and buoyant trash into big mats that settled on the road. There were PILES of those earplugs. You could use a shovel to scoop them up. It was horrifying.


I see this when I go for walks. You can be in a really nice area with landscaping, but the more grass and shrubbery there is the more crap accumulates. And the mowers shred up all the litter into tiny pieces that get settled into the grass and can't be practically cleaned up. As you mentioned, in brushy areas there's a solid carpet of smashed up shredded litter embedded in the weeds and buses. I don't know what the solution to this is, except to keep people from littering less to begin with. Rolling trash bins help in residential areas, but apartment complexes and businesses don't do a good job keeping their dumpster areas clean so trash can escape and get floated or blown away.
this is why there is nothing but plastic in the stomachs of whales or at the bottom of the marina trench, or really anywhere you look. people can try to kid themselves, but our planet is coated in a layer of non-degradable single use consumer garbage. and virtually all of it was created in the last 50 years. honestly this has little to do with littering and everything to do with our expectations of convenience and low cost and disposability. we're so far past the point of no return.
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  #48  
Old Posted May 22, 2019, 10:17 PM
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Perth: about the same. Has always been one of the cleanest cities in the world. Australians generally care about the public realm, so litter, pet waste and vandalism are rare. Buildings and infrastructure are new and well maintained.

Calgary: Cleaner. Like Perth, one of the cleanest cities in the world. Notice significantly fewer cigarette butts on the roads now. Only room for improvement would be better cleaning up residue from all the gravel dumped on the roads in the winter, and removing dead trees

Seattle: far dirtier. Aggressive homeless have taken over the city, with encampments, human excrement and discarded drug paraphernalia. The new San Francisco
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  #49  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 5:34 AM
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Austin is about the same except that there are a lot of visible small homeless camps around town populated by the new young nomads as well as the typical homeless of days past. It isn't out of control yet, but I fear another Seattle or Portland in the making.
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  #50  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 1:39 PM
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Originally Posted by MonkeyRonin View Post
I actually live in a building that has quite a bit of spray painting and my windows face towards a very heavily graffitied lot and I don't mind it at all. Again, beats a blank brick wall. Though, worth noting that even I don't approve of graffiti on architecturally valuable buildings, public art, or nature. Sides of buildings, alleyways, and other underused or derelict urban spaces are fair game though.
Some people like blight and urban decay or grit.

Some people don't mind empty buildings to have their windows broken either.

It's vandalism. It's not art. It's spray paint from some guy with an imagination and a mentality that the laws don't apply to him.

Ultimately, it takes a toll on a city unless there are programs to control it. NY was very successful in reducing the levels of graffiti from the Gotham years.
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  #51  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 2:00 PM
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Graffiti doesn't seem to have the same connotations everywhere in the world. The area that MonkeyRonin posted may be slightly gritty, but it's certainly not blighted or decayed in any sense. I actually know a business owner in the are who was forced by the city to remove graffiti they enjoyed from a blank wall at their commercial establishment. If they liked it, is it vandalism? They got someone to paint something new shortly after.

And for the record, vandalism can be art. It's fine if you prioritize prevention of vandalism over art, but the terms aren't mutually exclusive. This isn't a new concept either, illegal art installations have existed for a long time. It can even shift over time - graffiti alley behind Queen West in central Toronto started as a concentration of illegal art (with frequent bylaw tickets) and is now sanctioned and even become a tourist attraction.
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  #52  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 2:25 PM
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Graffiti doesn't seem to have the same connotations everywhere in the world. The area that MonkeyRonin posted may be slightly gritty, but it's certainly not blighted or decayed in any sense.
yea i mean go to Buenos Aires and theres grafitti on virtually (literally?) every building. you can make of it whatever you want but the reality is these areas would not be in any way considered blighted. its generally accepted and a cultural thing. i mean maybe by American suburban country club standards it would be unfathomable, but to basically anyone outside that sort of wealthy first world bubble its simply normal.



i think its also worthwhile to rank this into tiers. and the lowest end you have gang grafitti, which i dont think anyone would consider to have merit or worth.

above that you have simple taggings, which is probably just some kid scrawling his name on walls, or political messaging.

after that you get into more elaborate grafitti, stuff that is still technically tagging but more elaborate and requiring more skill and patience.

after that you get into what most people consider street art (and likely what someone would be disappointed to see washed away).

sometimes theyre sanctioned by the building owner, sometimes theyre not.

sometimes they all coexist at the exact same time


Last edited by Via Chicago; May 23, 2019 at 2:56 PM.
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  #53  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 2:57 PM
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Graffiti has turned some of the most depressing stretches of industrial ruin in Detroit into something positive and unique. I'm all for it.
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  #54  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 3:02 PM
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i mean maybe by American suburban country club standards it would be unfathomable, but to basically anyone outside that sort of wealthy first world bubble its simply normal.
i had no idea that chicago was a suburban country club.

i learn new things everyday.
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  #55  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 3:33 PM
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i had no idea that chicago was a suburban country club.

i learn new things everyday.
by global standards, most of the areas you're talking about in Chicago certainly are no different in the types of people they attract today. when we're talking about neighborhoods where Penny Pritzker and Ken Griffin have their homes...yes.

also, grafitti IS rampant ouside of certain wealthy neighborhoods in chicago, so im also not entirely sure what point youre making.
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  #56  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 3:38 PM
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my comment was aimed at the city of chicago's intolerance of graffiti.

the city of chicago is not a suburban country club.
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  #57  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 3:41 PM
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well, theres a difference, because a lot of the grafitti in Chicago is related to gangs. and gang taggings lead to violence, so theres an imperative to remove it. i seriously doubt any of the taggings you see in Buenos Aires are related to gang activity. as i said lumping in street art with gang grafitti is where this conversation starts to get lost because we're talking about entirely different things (even if your average person from the suburbs might look at both and irrationally equate them with the same thing because theyre both at their core paint on the side of a building)

as we've already seen, street art can have a transformative effect on a neighborhood (simply look at a place like Bushwick, where foreign tourists now take tours to look at murals). is it any surprise Chicago is trying to do the same thing? were all of them sanctioned? of course not, but the difference they made was creating life and culture in a place that before was simply somewhat of an industrial wasteland.
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  #58  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 3:44 PM
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also, grafitti IS rampant ouside of certain wealthy neighborhoods in chicago
no it's not.

there's no place in chicago that looks like those BA pics you posted.

chicago cleans that shit.

here are some typical non-wealthy commercial streets in chicago.

https://www.google.com/maps/@41.9683...7i16384!8i8192

https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8181...7i16384!8i8192

https://www.google.com/maps/@41.7656...7i16384!8i8192

pretty damn free of graffiti.
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  #59  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 3:47 PM
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so you are maintaining BA is a wasteland and people are scared to live there because of all the graffiti? or is it possible there is a difference in cultural attitudes?

tagging residential buildings isnt common in Chicago, but old/industrial buildings in out of the way areas certainly do get marked up. we also have these things called alleys where a lot of this stuff is relegated to.
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  #60  
Old Posted May 23, 2019, 3:49 PM
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Phoenix has gotten dirtier as its population and pop density have increased. Still pretty clean though
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