NEW ORLEANS — The City of New Orleans today announced the launch of a new graffiti abatement initiative designed to address the City’s long-standing issues with graffiti vandalism. The program aims to tackle the persistent challenge of unsightly graffiti on buildings, properties, and thoroughfares throughout the city.
“As Mayor, my administration has consistently presented a vision for the City of New Orleans that is free of liter, debris and graffiti,” said Mayor LaToya Cantrell. “Today’s launch of our graffiti abatement program is yet another example of how we are making positive progress towards a cleaner, safer and more vibrant city. As we create even more innovative initiatives like these, we will continue to meet our most pressing needs by putting tools in place that help move New Orleans forward, while making necessary, long-term investments in our communities and our people.”
By targeting the most severe instances of defacement, the program will not only restore the visual appeal of neighborhoods but also actively combat criminal activity, break the cycle of disinvestment and foster an environment conducive to economic and community growth.
“Vandalism, particularly in the form of graffiti, detracts from the beauty of our local neighborhoods and impacts resident morale,” said Chief Administrative Officer Gilbert Montaño. “Moreover, it can perpetuate criminal behavior and hinder both economic progress and community development. Implementing this new program has been a top priority, as it concentrates on the most egregious cases of graffiti to provide immediate relief to our residents and business owners by revitalizing these spaces.”
This initiative will complement the City’s efforts to address private property violations and keep public spaces free from graffiti and will work in partnership with existing graffiti abatement initiatives in the French Quarter and Downtown Development District. The City recognizes the importance of public art and its ability to mitigate graffiti vandalism, and the program will be mindful of preserving graffiti murals or art installations.
The City has contracted Safe Wash Solutions, a local property maintenance company with expertise in graffiti removal, to provide abatement services. The abatement program has identified a series of priority corridors where immediate removal efforts will take place.
Today’s kickoff focused on remediating properties in a commercial strip along St. Claude Avenue, but abatement efforts in the coming weeks will include corridors across the city.
“We are grateful and honored to be working with the City of New Orleans on this very important graffiti abatement project,” said Chief Executive Officer of Safe Wash Solutions Ciana McDaniel. “Graffiti has a negative impact on communities and businesses and goes hand in hand with crime. Research has shown that the presence of graffiti promotes social disobedience and higher crime rates — not by a little but by a lot. This project is a huge step in the right direction. We are so thankful that we can help make a positive difference in the community by helping to lower crime and by restoring the beauty to our great city.”
To report graffiti, residents are encouraged to call 311 or submit a service request online at nola311.org.